Unfortunately, California has a reputation for being a hub for addiction. There are several reasons for this. Addiction is a social problem as well as a personal one, and it affects whole communities.
But a lot of communities in California are breaking the stereotype. Sobriety is more popular than ever, and a lot of people are reaching out for help.
There are many ways to get past the stigma surrounding addiction. Here are a few ways to do so.
- Sober Bars
Hanging out at the bar is a popular pastime.
Bars are a social hub. They are popular places for dates, group outings, and events. However, most bars don’t have alcohol free options.
The alcohol-free options that bars do offer are usually boring. For a designated driver or someone trying to stay sober, this can be frustrating.
Thankfully, there is a rising number of sober bars. This is not only a trend in California. Nationwide and internationally, the trend has started to take off.
Sober bars have all the same features as traditional ones. The only difference is that there is no alcohol.
Whatever type of bar you typically like to visit, you can easily find a sober version in California. There are bars with country music, pool tables, karaoke, and just places to sit and enjoy yourself.
If you live in a big city, finding a sober bar near you shouldn’t be a problem. And even if you have to drive a bit, you don’t have to worry about having a designated driver for the outing.
- Intensive Outpatient Programs
Most addicts require professional treatment.
Achieving sobriety on your own is not easy, and it’s not necessarily safe, either. Detoxing should be supervised by a medical professional.
Centers like Studio 64 Recovery specialize in providing treatment for people who struggle with addiction or substance abuse.
One of the main benefits of these centers is that they offer Intensive Outpatient Programs, otherwise known as IOPs. IOPs are much more affordable than traditional programs.
IOPs also have a good success rate. That’s because they prepare you for life after rehab. In traditional programs, you must live at the center for at least a month. In many cases, you might have to stay longer.
While you’re in rehab, you don’t have all the temptations and stresses of the outside world. It’s easier to stay sober when there isn’t alcohol around.
During an IOP, you stay in the comfort of your own home. You also have the support of your friends and family.
This prepares you for a new life of sober living. Sober living communities are also on the rise and gaining popularity.
- Support Groups
There are many people who struggle with addiction.
Some say that only addicts can help other addicts. It’s hard for those who haven’t struggled with addiction to understand the problems.
Support groups like AA, Alcoholics Anonymous, have been growing. As the stigma around addiction disappears, more people are willing to visit groups and share their problems with others.
This is great. It’s important to have someone you can talk to. You can learn a lot from people who have gone through the same struggles.
Each group has its own personality and dynamic. You might need to try a few different groups before finding the right one for you.
If there isn’t a group near you, look for an online one.
- Outdoor Activities
Spending time outdoors is healthy.
Going for hikes and walks is a great way to recover. It’s also a great sober activity and it’s family friendly.
And if you’re lucky enough to live in California, you’re living in one of the most beautiful places in the country.
Here’s a list from Conde Nast Traveler of some of the best national parks in the state. Visit one and you’ll see how many people are enjoying the great outdoors.
Thanks to its size and varied landscape, California has something for everyone. There’s the beach and the mountains.
- Community Outreach
Certain communities are more affected by addiction than others.
Lower income areas and minority neighborhoods tend to have higher rates of addiction than others. This leads to a toxic cycle.
More and more communities are taking a proactive approach to fighting addiction. Prevention is just as important as treating addiction itself.
Schools, churches, and other types of community centers are increasing their outreach programs. Most of these programs are organized at a local level and are grass root in nature.
Check out what options are available near you.
California has the potential to be a great place for sober living to thrive.