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Addiction and Mental Health Treatment

Coping skills and treatment

Although many people turn to substances as a coping mechanism to deal with the challenges and issues in their life, when they become addicted to the substances, they will need coping strategies to overcome addiction itself.

Most people turn to substances because of lack of support, and lack of knowledge of techniques and strategies to cope with the challenges in their life. Replacing substances with healthy coping mechanisms can help dealing with stress, anxiety, trauma and other issues.

What are Coping Skills?

Coping skills is a general term used to describe any tools, techniques and strategies that can help people deal with changes, challenges, health issues, symptoms, and other concerns. While there are a wide range of tools and techniques, what works better for each individual is based on their needs, preferences and predilections.

Clinically Reviewed by: Charee Marquez, LMFT

Why is it Necessary to Adopt New Coping Skills?

Stress Reduction

Decreasing stress and managing it in a healthy way is a crucial step toward building better resilience against life’s challenges. Increased stress causes a series of psychological and cognitive responses leading to physical and mental issues, but using stress reduction techniques can help overcome these symptoms.

Emotional Regulation

Managing emotions is something that we are not born with. It is a learned skill, usually passed down by a parent or caregiver during the formative years of a child. Even so, many people struggle with learning this skill. Using emotion regulation skills can help manage reactionary behaviors.

Better Mental Health

Positive mental health and wellbeing enables an individual to take charge of their thoughts, emotions, actions and reactions, so that they can function well in their life despite challenges.

Healthy Coping Skills


There are a wide variety of psychotherapy techniques that are suitable for different kinds of individuals to help with a range of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, panic, stress and other disorders.

Some helpful therapy modalities are :

Support Groups

Developing one’s own supportive network can provide resources and can be a source of strength when needing support with challenges. Many mental health issues as well as addiction issues can be isolating, so a healthy support system can be leveraged to finding and sharing coping techniques.

Some popular support groups for addiction are :

  • 12-step programs
  • SMART Recovery
  • Secular Organizations for Sobriety
  • Women for Sobriety
Diet and Lifestyle Changes

Healthy diet and physical exercise play a large part in not only coping with addiction and other mental health challenges, by reducing the symptoms, but they also go a long way in creating a healthy life.

Some important lifestyle changes :

  • Healthy and nutritious diet
  • Reassessing how time is spent
  • Daily exercise and/or recreational activities
  • Better sleep habits
  • Reducing dependence on addictive substances
Mindfulness Based Practices

Recent research indicates that relaxation techniques, spiritual practices (if suitable), and mindfulness based techniques help alleviate symptoms of stress, anxiety, addiction and other issues.

Some popular mindfulness based practices are :

  • Breathing techniques
  • Movement exercises such as Yoga, Tai chi
  • Meditation
  • Body scanning

Coping Skills Toolkit

Collecting and developing one’s own individual set of coping strategies that work for them and suit their lifestyle helps provide a strong foundation and a go-to place when in need on your road to recovery. Creating a support network, a healthy routine, and maintaining a balanced lifestyle are all stepping stones in overcoming challenges and achieving mental health and wellbeing. Contact California Prime Recovery to continue your recovery process. 

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