Substance use in the United States is common and included in many individuals’ routines. Unfortunately, both illicit drugs like opioids and cocaine, and recreational drugs like marijuana and alcohol (yes, this “happy hour” staple is also a drug) negatively affect both your physical and mental health.

The 2022 National Survey on Drug Use executed by the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) revealed that nearly 60% of people aged 12 and over reported drinking alcohol, smoking or vaping, or using an illicit drug in the previous month.

Dr. Mandeep Walia-Bhatia helps people examine the role that substances play in their lives. Drugs may help them loosen up socially or become a way of coping with stress, for example. The care provided by Gain Wellness Center involves examining your health history, past and current conditions, lifestyle habits, and the connection between your emotional and physical health, and how drug use has a major impact on your overall well-being.

The insidious nature of drugs

When we consider the statistics about drug use in our country, it causes many to ask, “When does drug use become misuse? At what point does “casual” use turn into dependence?”

The habitual use of drugs — whether that’s drinking alcohol or smoking pot every day to unwind or taking those leftover painkillers from a surgical procedure to dull physical or mental pain — results in compromised health. In other words, the solution for one thing can easily become a hindrance.

Ditching drugs for a healthier 2024

As you consider your New Year’s resolutions, it makes a tremendous amount of sense to set a goal to make 2024 a year during which you use no drugs. It might sound like a formidable challenge, but consider the potential benefits:

1. Improve your physical health on many fronts

By substituting a healthier diet, daily exercise, and mindfulness practices like meditation for drug use, you’ll be supporting your health in many ways.

Drug use raises your risk for a host of health conditions, from heart disease and certain cancers to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and dental problems, depending on which ones you’re using. They also affect your mood and cause problems like depression and anxiety.

When you avoid using drugs, you improve both your current and future health.

2. Reduce your stress

There are many things you won’t have to worry about if you go drug-free this coming year, including disturbed sleep, missed school or work deadlines, and stretched finances.

Here’s another instance when substituting healthier activities can help you manage your stress more effectively – think taking a yoga or tai chi class, enjoying a cup of tea with a good book, or connecting with a friend by taking a walk.

3. Gain more time for connecting with others and pursuing your favorite activities

If you aren’t focused on or using substances, you’ll find you have much more time for healthy hobbies you love like gardening, taking off for the beach over a weekend, or hosting a meal for your friends and family.

4. Enjoy better relationships

Drug use frequently leads to problems in your relationships — with your spouse, children, friends, or coworkers.

When you’re mentally clear each day, you’ll find that this is a boon to your relationships.

5. You’ll feel like you again

Without the negative flattening or agitating effects that drugs have on people’s personalities and moods, saying goodbye to drugs means that you’ll have better mental clarity and your emotions will be unclouded. This means you’ll be better able to understand and express them to communicate more effectively.

Dr. Walia-Bhatia is dedicated to doing all she can to assist you in your journey to sobriety.

To understand where your health is as you embark on going drug-free, she may recommend a Complete Wellness Evaluation. This is an in-depth examination of your cellular health, your dietary and physical activity habits, digestive and metabolic health, and endocrine health — all of which drug use can dysregulate and harm.

Because getting treated at Gain Wellness Center means your health is viewed through a functional medicine lens, Dr. Walia-Bhatia looks at every part of your life and how each impacts your health, from your daily habits to the environments in which you live and work. The goal is to treat the root causes of your health issues as opposed to placing a bandage on a set of isolated symptoms.

You can start 2024 on a much healthier note by deciding to eschew drug use, and Gain Wellness Center can help.

Call our San Diego office at 858-206-9715 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Walia-Bhatia, or reach out to us online to start your journey to sobriety and enhanced health.

Author Dr. Mandeep Walia-Bhatia, DC, AFMCP Dr. Mandeep Walia-Bhatia, DC, AFMCP, is the founder of Gain Wellness Center in San Diego, California. At the wellness center, one of Dr. Walia’s, greatest goals, as a health care provider, is to provide her practice members with alternative, but healthy and safe choices that will enhance their health and well-being. She likes to motivate and educate her practice members to take charge of their health by providing them with evidence-based information so that they can make informed decisions regarding their own personal health and take control of their health. Dr. Walia was born in India and raised in Canada before moving to San Diego. She attended McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada for her Master of Science degree with specialties in Biology and Physiology. She had various publications in research articles during her time at McMaster University funded by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada. She has three kids and enjoys cooking, hiking and going to the beach with her family.

Call Us Text Us
Skip to content