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Dangers of Cannabis Legalization for Recovery

We all know recovering from any addiction is a process that involves many steps. Recovery doesn’t just happen all at once — it takes commitment, resilience and a willingness to do whatever it takes. When temptation strikes, your efforts to stay committed to recovery can be derailed. That’s why avoiding temptation is one of the best strategies an addict can take to keep on track.

Sometimes, however, despite your best efforts, outside factors can exacerbate the problem. Recent cannabis legalization in Illinois is one of these factors. If you find legal marijuana in Illinois a temptation, don’t fret. We’ve put together some tips and recommendations to prevent relapse at any stage in the recovery process.

Why There’s an Increased Risk of Relapse in Illinois

According to an article published in PubMed Central (PMC), before the legalization of marijuana in Colorado, about 2,000 residents had a medical marijuana registration. Within two years of cannabis legalization, however, there were an estimated 150,000 Colorado residents in possession of a medical marijuana registration. These numbers alone point to the grand impact of government legalization on increased marijuana use.

What’s more, studies have shown that cannabis legalization can have a severe impact on adolescents because of their vulnerability. Cannabis legalization in Illinois can further derail the recovery efforts of those who are most susceptible to its temptations.

Addicts in the process of recovery are more likely to ignore efforts to guide them toward treatment options if they live in a state that has already legalized marijuana.

How to Continue Your Recovery Despite Cannabis Legalization

  1. Stick to a routine: Creating structure in your life is a proven way to increase your chances of success. When you know what to expect out of your daily routine, you’ll be less likely to even consider relapsing. However, setting too many rules for yourself can be a precursor to failure. Make sure you reward yourself and practice self-compassion.
  2. Stay healthy: Habits that keep you healthy and happy are essential when sticking to any recovery program. Practicing gratitude is one of the best ways to keep your mind sound and healthy. Getting adequate sleep, exercising and taking at least two minutes every day to do something you love are proven methods for keeping you on track with your recovery goals.
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help: There are several treatment options out there for people in recovery. Contact Gateway today to learn about our treatments and methods.
  4. Connect with like-minded people: When you are trying to stick with a goal, it’s always important to surround yourself with like-minded people. Several online social media platforms allow you to connect with other recovering addicts. Studies show communicating regularly with people who hold similar goals can help you stay on track.

If you or a loved one is struggling with sticking to your recovery goals, you’re not alone! Gateway has trained professionals who are ready to assist you in the recovery process. Contact us today to learn more.


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