New Jersey, NY – May 5th, 2020 – The myriad restrictions and dislocations caused by COVID19 is challenging to everyone, worldwide. “But for people in recovery, it has created the perfect storm for relapse,” noted Dr. Indra Cidambi, a nationally acclaimed Addiction Expert and Medical Director of New Jersey-based Center for Network Therapy. “The proven triggers for relapse – stress, anxiety, boredom and financial strain – are present concurrently during this crisis, and it is important to cope with them effectively to prevent relapse,” she added.
Restrictions imposed by COVID19 make it difficult to “manage your environment,” a primary relapse prevention technique, to get away from certain triggers. So, Dr. Cidambi offers people afflicted by substance use disorders alternate strategies to stay sober and healthy:
Not having anything to do will feed into the negativity of the situation. Remember the things you always wished you had the time to do – color code your clothes, get your financial documents in order, etc. – get these done. It will keep you distracted, and reduce stress in the future.
Working out is a good way to kill time, reduce stress and stay healthy. Various exercise, yoga, and meditation regimens are available online at no cost. Pick one that is suitable to your living situation and practice daily.
Line up your doctor appointments in advance as they are more restricted, and pharmacies are not fully stocked – you don’t want to run out of buprenorphine or naltrexone that help you remain abstinent.
Leverage Support System
Attend AA and NA meetings regularly through online platforms and talk to your sponsor by phone to process your triggers and feelings as they arise. This will reduce stress and provide you with tools and strategies to cope with people and situations around you.
Access your therapist or other health care providers through telehealth platforms, as health insurance providers have eased reimbursement restrictions during COVID19. Call your provider for details.
Recent research suggests that smokers who contract COVID19 are 2.4 times more likely than non-smokers to face severe outcomes – ICU admission, need for mechanical ventilation or death. It may be time to think seriously about quitting smoking. FDA approved, over-the-counter smoking cessation products are safe and effective and you may want to consider using them.
“Resisting cravings caused by triggers is important because, if you give in to them, it will only make the cravings stronger the next time around,” said Dr. Cidambi.
For more information on substance abuse, chemical dependency, addiction and treatment please go to www.RecoveryCNT.com.
About Dr. Indra Cidambi
Indra Cidambi, M.D., is recognized as America’s leading addiction treatment expert. She started New Jersey’s first licensed Ambulatory (Outpatient) Detoxification program for all substances seven years ago at CNT. Dr. Cidambi is Board Certified in General Psychiatry and double Board Certified in Addiction Medicine (ABAM, ABPN). She is the President of the New Jersey Society of Addiction Medicine. She is fluent in five languages, including Russian.
About Center for Network Therapy
Center for Network Therapy (CNT) was the first facility in New Jersey to be licensed to provide Ambulatory (Outpatient) Detoxification Services for all substances of abuse – alcohol, anesthetics, benzodiazepines and opiates. Led by a Board Certified Addiction Psychiatrist, experienced physicians and nurses closely monitor patient progress. With CNT’s superior client care and high quality treatment, Dr. Cidambi and her clinical team have successfully detoxed roughly over 2000 patients in seven years. CNT also offers Partial Care and IOP programs.
Dr. Cidambi is a leader in addiction treatment and innovator of safe and effective ambulatory (outpatient) detoxification level of care for alcohol, benzodiazepines, opiates, and suboxone. Prior to founding the Center for Network Therapy, she completed her residency in Psychiatry at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn and an Addiction Medicine Fellowship at NYU/Bellevue Hospital in New York. Due to the successful detoxification program, Dr. Cidambi was featured frequently by media outlets, including NPR, CBS, NY Times, and Wall Street Journal.