The first three parts of this series focused on our brains – how we start to heal them in recovery. Equally important are the ways we can take care of our bodies in recovery, ways that also support our efforts to heal our brains and maintain their neuroplasticity.
Julia Smillie is a national award-winning freelance writer and editor whose work has appeared in lit magazines, consumer and trade publications nationwide. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University Los Angeles and is currently trying to wrangle her way through the maddening stages of finishing her first novel. She lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan and has been sober since 1996.
In a nutshell, we create new neuropathways by establishing and practicing new habits. The more we repeat them, the more ingrained those neuropathways become. Here are four key elements of the process.
Neuroplasticity is how we learn to speak a new language or play a new instrument – and it’s also what recovery from opioids depends on. It’s hard, but it’s possible.
Combatting Michigan’s opioid crisis involves a myriad of efforts and a number of agencies, from law enforcement to health care systems to addiction recovery initiatives. Working hard among them is the FBI’s Detroit Division. Maureen Reddy, Assistant Special Agent says the FBI approaches Michigan’s opioid crisis from a few different angles, most of them focused on stemming the supply of opioids to the state’s citizens and beyond.
Like most Michigan Counties, Washtenaw County has been working hard in recent years to tackle the crisis of the nationwide opioid epidemic. Also like most counties, Washtenaw has seen an uptick in opioid-related overdoses.
Everywhere you look, news stories and headlines announce the latest scandals: pill mills, doctors over-prescribing pain meds, parents overdosing with their children in their car, even veterinarians having to monitor pets’ owners for abuse of pain medication. It’s hard to wrap your head around the scope of it all. And Michigan, like every state, has been hit hard by the epidemic.