A good book can be a number of things for a person. For example, it can be a mirror reflecting that person’s world and feelings back at them. It can also be a tool that helps a reader get to know him or herself better. Books can also be safe spaces to explore thoughts and emotions. No matter what the reason is for reading books, doing so can fulfill a variety of roles. When it comes to reading during recovery, books about addiction are a valuable resource that can be helpful during any stage of the rehabilitation process.
Books about addiction can provide information and support, offering readers a variety of perspectives on addiction and recovery. They can also be a source of comfort, providing hope and inspiration when times are rough.
Reading books about addiction can also help individuals in recovery to feel not so alone. That’s because these books can help people in recovery connect with the stories of other people who have struggled with addiction and have found ways to get and stay sober.
No matter what your reason or goal is for reading addiction recovery books, there are likely some that will suit your needs. If you’re not sure where to start, we have you covered. We have compiled a list of addiction books that address different types of addiction and different ways of overcoming addiction. Equipped with this list of valuable and accessible resources, you can rest assured that there will be a book that speaks to you and your recovery needs.
The Benefits of Reading Books About Addiction in Recovery
Reading, in general, is a pastime that has many benefits. This goes for those who are in recovery and for those who are not. Not only are books about addiction a way to expand your horizons, but books can also help you relax. This is beneficial as relaxation has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, both of which are common for those in recovery.
While addiction recovery books may be helpful during any time in sobriety, they are especially useful during the first few months of sobriety because that’s when it is difficult to find a balance between work responsibilities and self-care. Luckily, reading is an easy way to facilitate the crucial self-care needed to maintain sobriety. Some of the physical and mental health benefits of reading include the following:
- Reduced stress
- Increased empathy skills
- Increase in sleep readiness
- Improved brain connectivity
- Decrease in feelings of anxiety
- Lessened symptoms of depression
- Increase of white matter in the brain
- Lowered blood pressure and heart rate
- Slowed rate of cognitive decline due to aging
- Improved vocabulary and reading comprehension skills
In addition to the many physical and mental health benefits that come with reading are psychological and social benefits. Additional benefits of reading books about addiction include the following:
While in the throes of addiction, empathy is usually put on the back burner. Many addicts find themselves unable to put themselves in the shoes of others. Often they may do things that hurt friends and family members. For example, they may lash out when they are feeling low or when someone acknowledges their substance abuse issues.
Reading addiction-centered books that help you understand what your loved ones have been going through can help you start to develop empathy for them and the people around you. Things you never considered as being hurtful or emotionally damaging may become apparent while reading. Moreover, this can be helpful for those who are in the process of making amends for how their addictions hurt the ones around them.
Reading books about addiction also helps addicts understand their own journeys with addiction better, which is helpful for staying sober once an addict decides to get clean. There are many feelings that are common during addiction and the subsequent recovery process that can be hard to name. Understanding the feelings of shame, guilt, anger, self-loathing, boredom, and stress that contributed to your addiction will empower you on your road to sobriety.
Furthermore, recovery books can make your journey more bearable by helping you understand yourself better. By reading books about similar experiences, you may find that the author put in words that represent what you currently feel. Equipped with this new language, a better understanding of your experiences is possible.
Lets You Know That You are Not Alone
Addiction can be lonely. You may feel like no one understands what you are going through. Reading books on addiction can help you come to terms with your own addiction story. This is because books by other people who are in recovery provide proof that you are not the only person who feels the way you do.
Starts You Practicing Self-Love
No matter how long you have been in recovery, books on addiction help remind us of the simple benefits of being loving towards ourselves. When we show love to ourselves, it is easier to stay clean and maintain a positive perspective about life in general. Unfortunately, self-esteem issues can contribute to or result from an addiction. Just reading books that reaffirm your value as a person will start putting your self-esteem back together again quickly.
Give You Access to New Resources and Ideas
There are all sorts of books written by experts on various topics related to addiction and recovery. Some books about addiction can be a great resource for people who aren’t ready to embark on their recovery journeys yet. Other books for addicts can prepare you for what to expect when you get into recovery. Additionally, many books about addiction reference other books that you may find yourself interested in reading too.
Increase Your Knowledge of Addiction and Recovery
Reading books about addiction can also increase your knowledge of addiction and recovery. When you read books on the topic of addiction, you will better understand the disease and how it affects people. This is because many books cover the risks associated with addiction and the benefits of recovery.
There are also many books written by addicts that detail their personal struggles with addiction and give advice based on their experiences. By reading addiction recovery books, one’s perspective on addiction can be altered drastically because many books for addicts have detailed information about the causes behind someone becoming an addict, to begin with.
When it comes to recovery, you may not know what to expect. Books about a recovery journey can shed light on the rehabilitation process. Having a base of knowledge on what to expect in recovery from reading addiction recovery books can make the step of finding help much easier and less intimidating.
Seeing Things From Other Point of Views
One thing books do really well is present scenarios from several different points of view so readers gain a fuller understanding of the situation at hand. This can be helpful for addicts who find themselves unable to change the way they perceive the problems in their lives. Reframing how you think about things is so important in recovery as this is the main goal of many types of therapy.
Best Books on Addiction for Recovery
Books about addiction are very useful for those going through the rehabilitation process. These helpful writings range from traditional addiction recovery books to quick guides on how to make the most of your rehabilitation experiences, to easy-to-read memoirs that help addicts identify with other people and their addictions.
Here at Florida Center for Recovery, we have compiled a list of the best books on addiction that we could find. These were all chosen with the goal of bringing you peace of mind, lifting your spirits, and showing you that you are not alone. If you are interested in inspirational messages, guidelines for a successful recovery, or first-hand accounts by recovering addicts or families of recovering addicts, then this collection of addiction books can be helpful in setting your addiction recovery goals and plans.
Books on Addiction Recovery
Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions by Russell Brand. Best known as a comedian and actor, Russel Brand’s memoir sheds light on his struggle with addiction and his recovery. With humor and honesty, he shares the wisdom gained after 14 years of recovery.
The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober: Discovering A Happy, Healthy, Wealthy Alcohol-Free Life by Catherine Gray. Author Catherine Gray details her cycle of addiction in this memoir. Drink, hangover, repeat. She tells riveting stories of her many misadventures while in the center of her alcohol addiction. But her book goes beyond that to talk about life after recovery and how life changes when you quit drinking.
Books for the Family of an Addict
Smacked: A Story of White-Collar Ambition, Addiction, and Tragedy by Eilene Zimmerman. Eilene’s story is not about her own struggles with addiction. Instead, she takes the reader through the moment she discovered her ex-husband was addicted to drugs. A realization that forced her to work to rebuild her life for herself and her children.
Codependent No More: How to Stop Controlling Others and Start Caring for Yourself by Melody Beattie. Codependency is a common issue when it comes to loving an addict. Many people find themselves losing sight of themselves and their own problems when a partner is struggling with addiction. Beattie’s best-selling book benefits both addicts and their families by providing guidance that will help them to overcome codependency.
Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction by David Sheff. David Sheff’s autobiographical book follows his journey navigating life with a son addicted to crystal meth. The book, a New York Times bestseller and a major motion picture, portrays how drug addictions hurt those closest to the addict.
Books about Drug Addiction
High Achiever: The Incredible True Story of One Addict’s Double Life by Tiffany Jenkins. Jenkin’s memoir is hailed as a feat of storytelling which reads as if it were fiction. Her book starts with her opioid addiction and ends with her recovery—but not before a 120-day stay in a Florida jail cell. Along the way, she offers hope, inspiration, and insight to those suffering from opioid addiction.
Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis & Larry Sloman. Anthony Kiedis, the frontman of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, may have been a successful musician, but he was also severely addicted to drugs. This memoir follows his stardom, the addictions it led to, and how he found his way out of addiction.
BACK ON TRACKmarks: From Hopeless to Dopeless by Matt Peterson. It may seem unlikely that someone who is a preacher could become addicted to drugs. This true story of Matt Peterson’s addiction to opiate painkillers details exactly that to show that addiction can affect anyone.
Books on Alcohol Addiction
A Happier Hour by Rebecca Weller. While many would expect a health coach to know better than to drink several bottles of wine a week, that was not the case with Rebecca Weller. Her book takes us through her recovery journey where she had to make the choice to give up drinking to pursue the life she wanted to live.
Drunk Mom: A Memoir by Jowita Bydlowska. The true story of Jowita Bydlowska details how she undid years of sobriety with a single act: drinking a glass of champagne at a party celebrating the birth of her first child. Her story chronicles how one instance can change everything and how recovery is a life-long journey.
Dry by Augusten Burroughs. This New York Times Best Seller recounts Burroughs’s addiction to alcohol and the realization that once he became sober, his life would still be the same. This memoir drives home the fact that our lives must truly be changed to recover from what drives us to drink.
Reading for Recovery with Florida Center for Recovery
Choosing to enter rehab can be a very difficult decision for many. At times patients feel stressed, worried, or alone in the very early stages of recovery. Books about addiction can show addicts that these feelings are normal. Furthermore, reading a book offering hope and advice about recovery is therapeutic and offers feelings of hope, courage, and understanding about one’s journey.
We take pride in helping individuals in recovery find books that are helpful in their journey of recovery. If you would like to have a book brought to our attention, please email us with the name and we will be happy to update our list. Additionally, if you’re looking to start your recovery journey, contact us today. Our team will help you explore treatment options that will lead to sustained, life-long addiction recovery.