Gooden Center
A residential drug treatment center for men located in Pasadena, CA. The Gooden Center is a proud member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

(626) 356-0078
191 North El Molino Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101 US

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Circadian Rhythm Disturbances Effect on Mental Health

Circadian Rhythm Disturbances Effect on Mental Health

Sleep habits and mental health are often closely connected in a number of different ways. People that have mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder are well-known to struggle with get a regular amount of sleep. The lack of sleep that they experience can often worsen symptoms and cause a vicious cycle of poor mental and physical health.

Studies have shown that patients with bipolar disorder tend to have more problems with circadian rhythm disturbances than healthier individuals. They stay up later at night, wake up in the middle of the night and often suffer from general issues of insomnia. These sleep disturbances can have a devastating effect on mental health and are even linked to higher rates of suicide.

Sleep problems influence a person’s mental health and their state of mental health can also impact their ability to sleep. Since these two problems are intertwined, it is necessary to treat both issues simultaneously so that they can improve the other. A patient with bipolar disorder who receives medication and psychotherapy may over time find it easier to sleep and in turn better sleep habits will improve their symptoms.

There are many techniques that can help repair a person’s circadian rhythm so that they are able to sleep regular hours without any disturbances. Strategies such as exercising regularly, spending time in the sun, improving diet and reducing stress can all have a positive impact on circadian rhythm. Supplements like melatonin can also be useful in balancing the body’s hormones that promote better sleep.

For better sleep habits and good mental health overall it is beneficial to go to sleep and wake up around the same time every day. Avoid staying up too late at night as it can disturb normal sleep patterns. Getting eight straight hours every night is crucial for mental health and overall wellbeing.

 

Young Lawyers Alcohol Abuse

Young Lawyers Alcohol Abuse

There is a common stereotype in movies and tv shows depicting the alcoholic lawyer who reaches for the bottle due to the stress of his job. Unfortunately, there is some truth to this stereotype as studies show lawyers are significantly more prone to alcoholism than the general population. As many as 36.6 of lawyers in one study had behaviors showing exhibiting issues of  problem drinking.

Surprisingly, this problem is only progressing further with the younger millennial generation of lawyers practicing now. The current generation in their 20s and early 30s tend to have more serious drinking habits due to financial stress, the high cost of living, and student loan debt. Young lawyers such as junior associates tend to drink the most because of these generational problems coupled with a highly stressful job.

Lawyers have demanding careers with long hours and frequently low professional satisfaction. They also have higher rates of mental health problems including depression and anxiety and often turn to alcohol to self-medicate. Alcohol becomes their solution to cope with the many issues that they face because of money, stress and very little free time.

The pattern of drinking frequently begins in law school when students party as a way to alleviate the stress of studying. When they take on full time jobs as lawyers, alcohol can take on a different role of calming their anxiety. Many will end a difficult day by going to happy hour with coworkers, as drinking often become part of the work culture in the legal profession.

Drinking may be thought to temporarily relieve stress for people with stressful jobs but ultimately it causes more psychological and behavioral issues that could endanger their career. Lawyers that abuse alcohol are likely to see it begin to affect their ability to work over time. Young lawyers with long term alcohol abuse problems need to address their issues with treatment and recovery.

Parenting an Adult Addict

Parenting an Adult Addict

The responsibility of being a parent may never completely end, even after children reach adulthood and leave home to lead their own lives. Being a parent means always trying to lead your son or daughter in the right direction especially when they are making very dangerous or unhealthy choices. When your adult child develops an addiction, it is often your responsibility as well as your desire as a parent to try to help them.

Parenting an adult addict can be difficult because you no longer can control their actions or tell them what to do. Some parents may worry too much for their child’s wellbeing and end up enabling them by getting them out of financial problems caused by their addiction. As a parent you need to learn the lines between stepping to help them and enabling them to continue their addictive behavior.

One problem that parents might experience is the feeling of guilt that can go along with having a child who is an addict. Their child might blame them for what they have become and the parent might feel ashamed of mistakes they made while raising them. It is important to understand that once a child reaches adulthood, their decisions are their own and it is not your fault that they have an addiction.

As a parent you need to avoid enabling your child but also be able to offer them love and support while encouraging them to get help. If possible, stage an intervention with other family members and loved ones who are concerned about their addiction. You need to try your best to still remain in their life but also protect yourself and others in the family from their misdeeds.

Having a child who is an addict is never easy, no matter what their age but with the right approach you can help motivate them to become sober.

Alcoholism and Ultimatums

Alcoholism and Ultimatums

When you are dealing with someone close to you who has a drinking problem it can be frustrating and painful knowing that you can’t stop their behavior. You might feel tempted to try to control the situation by giving them an ultimatum– “stop drinking or our relationship is over”. You need to be cautious about giving loved ones an ultimatum because addiction is complex and it can be hard to tell whether it will be effective in changing the situation.

Although it may feel like the right thing to ask an alcoholic to choose either you or drinking because you have had enough of their actions, it is important to understand that your demands may not be as realistic as you think. When a person is physically and mentally addicted to alcohol, their drinking behavior may be beyond their own control. They might try to quit at least temporarily to appease you or avoid the consequences of your ultimatum but it may not last permanently.

Ultimatums may not always be the best solution because it is impossible to control another person’s decisions and actions, especially an alcoholic. If your goal is to get a person to stop drinking then an intervention is usually the format that tends to get better results. The key is to help them realize for themselves how much their drinking affects others so that they make the choice to get help.

Quitting an addiction often requires the addict to come to the realization on their own that they need help. An ultimatum may only be useful if you want to give yourself space or improve your family life by staying away from addictive behavior. It is a legitimate choice to end a relationship because you are frustrated with a person’s addiction, but getting them to permanently change will require a more serious intervention.

The Link Between Grief and Anxiety

The Link Between Grief and Anxiety

The loss of a loved one can be one of the most devastating experiences that a person goes through in their life. Grief is very powerful and can affect a person’s physical and mental health if they are not able to process their grief and reach a point of acceptance. One of the most common issues associated with grief are psychological issues such as anxiety.

Grief and anxiety are actually very closely linked in most cases because the vulnerability that a person experiences after a loss often leads to anxiety. When someone passes away people are then faced with questions about mortality and the unpredictability of their existence. People often have difficulty fully processing grief because of the expectation from society to quickly move on and they are then left with more complex problems like anxiety.

After someone passes away people are usually expected to return to work or school fairly quickly. There is a significant stigma around showing emotions such as grief in our culture and people tend to hide or suppress their feelings to appear functional and normal to others. Unfortunately this can complicate grief and cause the individual to feel anxious not only about death but a more general anxiety that they can’t explain.

Experiencing the death of a loved one can be shocking and traumatic in a way that we often can’t fully comprehend. Suppressing feelings and not coping with grief can very negatively affect our emotional life and make it hard to get through daily life. Grief is something that few people are prepared to deal with and it often takes the help and guidance of a professional to get through each stage successfully.

When someone is able to process their grief they can start to minimize their feelings of anxiety and ultimately feel a sense of acceptance about their loss.