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Start a Healthy Addiction: Blogging

Posted on :  July 8th, 2015  |  By :  towardsrecovery

Whether you are in the middle of a methadone treatment or someone you love is being treated, one of the healthiest things you can do for your mind is begin a writing habit. While many people love to write in their personal journals, one of the most popular options for writing is blogging. This tried-and-true method of self-medication (without any medicine) has been helping people manage and evaluate their personal struggles for nearly a decade. Researchers have even found that blogging is highly therapeutic and it can serve as a coping mechanism. Now is the best time to begin a blog.

Blogging Brings Relief to Cancer Patients

One of the most promising studies about blogging and health was conducted by oncologists with their cancer patients. During this study, conducted in 2008, patients with cancer wrote in an expressive way before they had their treatments. Researchers found that the patients who wrote prior to treatment actually felt much better during and after treatment when compared to patients who did not have the opportunity to write. Researchers asked not only about physical feelings, but mental ones, too. Along with cancer patients, researchers have studied the effects of blogging on AIDS patients and have found the same results.

Blogging Provides a Healthy Outlet for Complaining

Now that blogging is viral due to the numerous opportunities to begin a blog for free, neuroscientists have studied the benefits of writing for an online audience. They have found that many people appreciate being able to complain in a public way. Blogging offers patients who are fighting terminal diseases and challenging treatments an outlet for their complaining. Once they are able to complain, they feel significantly better. Neuroscientists liken this behavior to the placebo effect, where people think themselves into feeling good.

The Brain Needs to Communicate; So Why Not Blog?

Other researchers have looked at the human’s need to communicate. Some people experience hypergraphia, which is the urge to write. Many people who are working through challenges relating to illness and addiction need to communicate. Blogging offers the brain the ability to meet that need to communicate and to write. Neuroscientists are seeing that their limbic systems are being satisfied through blogging because they can fill a very human need and for some bloggers, they actually experience a release of dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter that can be responsible for feelings of pleasure.

Where Does Blogging Affect the Brain

As researchers continue to look at why blogging helps bring relief to those experiencing uncomfortable treatments, they have found some areas of the brain that benefit from blogging. Speech is controlled in the frontal lobe and temporal lobe, but there is not an area in the brain that controls writing. When people have damage in the area of the brain known as Wernicke’s area in the temporal lobe, they can have problems with speaking and comprehending. Interestingly, patients with damage in Wernicke’s area are often compelled to write, and blogging could take care of their needs. Researchers have noticed that certain areas of the brain show heightened activity when people begin to blog, but the images vary based on different blogging sessions.

Build Your Blog and Build a Community

If blogging can help people with terminal illnesses, it can certainly provide relief to men and women who are fighting drug addiction. If you do decide to begin blogging, there is no particular topic that needs to be covered. Many people will write about what they know, and if you feel the need to write about your addiction, that is your choice. Since blogging is a way of sharing your thoughts and experiences online, you could develop an audience, which is a perk of blogging. You might even find that your online readers become a support for you, which is another benefit of taking time to write expressively online.

If you have any questions, contact Towards Recovery Clinics at 905-527-2042.

Who We Serve ?

  • Individuals using/abusing street narcotics (e.g. heroin).
  • Patients abusing prescription narcotics(i.e., Codeine, Talwin, Percocet/Percodan, Dilaudid, Morphine or Demerol, et cetera).
  • Individuals displaying any of the following behaviours: Compulsive drug use or drug seeking/craving.
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