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Recommended Reading

Posted May 13 2011 10:00pm

I have a few interesting books to recommend– the first mostly just for people interested in history and science, and the second two out of the ‘self help’ section.  I’ve read the latter two books and think they are valuable for people in recovery, to help grow into a new life of sobriety.  I receive a buck if you purchase through the links, and the proceeds help to support the site– so if you check them out, thanks!

More and more addicts presenting to my practice are reporting addictions to heroin.  I wrote a post a month or two ago, wondering if the change in the Oxycontin formulation would have the unintended consequence of increased use of heroin– and with it, the increased use of needles.  I’m sorry to say that my concerns were justified.  I’m seeing kids in high school with needle marks, and hearing about more and more deaths– the increase because of the less-predictable potency of a bag of H compared to a pharmaceutical tablet of OC.

For people interested in the history of this resurgent killer, this book describes the history and pharmaceutical properties of heroin.  And since it comes from Hazelden, it does not glamorize the drug:

Retail Price: 15.95

You Save: $3.19

I work with people who are on buprenorphine maintenance, who like everyone will sometimes feel ‘stuck.’  Addicts who use ‘the steps’ have a ready-made program of self-discovery right in front of them, but people on buprenorphine do not have the desperation that is often required to motivate a suffering addict to give him/herself to the steps.  So instead, I often talk about mindfulness.  I have read a number of  books about mindfulness over the years; one of my favorites is ‘Wherever you go, there you are’ by Kabat-Zin.  Here is another, more current book about mindfulness that I recommend:

Retail Price: 14.95

You Save: $2.99

Another issue for people on buprenorphine is the shame that they feel, left over from the days of lying and using.  Again, AA and NA have steps dedicated to processing this shame;  steps that people on maintenance buprenorphine would benefit from.  Shame is a particular issue in people who have to deal with loved ones who don’t ‘get it’ about buprenorphine;  who contribute to a feeling of guilt for what happened in the past– and even for their current means of treatment.  I try, during sessions with patients, to address the shame that they are feeling– and to help them realize that they have a disease that they do not deserve, and that they have no reason to feel shame over.  The following book is a classic for dealing with shame;  I read it myself years ago, as I was trying to put my own shame to rest, and I recommend it for any recovering addict who suffers from that heavy feeling that they did something wrong, and that they will never forgive themselves.  Get the book, forgive yourself, and move on.


Healing the Shame that Binds You – $ 11.96

Retail Price: 14.95
You Save: $2.99

By the way– I notice that my page is often covered with ads for Withdrawal-Ease (not sure if I am spelling that correctly).  I know nothing about the product; it is just coming up from the keywords on my site, assigned by Google adwords.  I do not endorse the product.  If you have tried it, you are welcome to comment about the product in response to this post– and I will leave your comment, whether it is good or bad.  I receive NOTHING if you purchase the product.

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