Relapse Prevention Strategies

Group of friends holding hands in a circle

Staying on the Road to Recovery

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, approximately 40 to 60 percent of people struggling with addiction will experience relapse in their recovery journey. Relapse is incredibly common and does not indicate a sign of weakness or failure.

Recovery takes an incredible amount of strength, willpower, and time. It also requires coping skills, techniques, and mechanisms to manage emotions, urges, and cravings. Additionally, the road to recovery involves relapse prevention strategies to stay on track and counter any feelings of wanting to reach for your substance of choice.

While having skills to use in a moment of desire are important, it is also essential to implement the following techniques into your daily routine to reduce the risk of relapse.

Know the Stages of Relapse

The three stages of relapse include emotional relapse, mental relapse, and physical relapse.

Familiarizing yourself with the three stages of relapse helps you build self-awareness to recognize if you are experiencing any of those symptoms. Being aware of the stages of relapse also allows you to put plans in place to cope with them and prevent you from relapsing.


Taking care of our bodies and minds is one of the more crucial steps to relapse prevention. This takes a significant amount of introspection and reflection to identify what your individual needs may be.

Once you can recognize your needs, the next step is to fulfill them on your own. This may mean getting an adequate amount of sleep, exercising, journaling, and eating healthy. Setting aside time for you to take care of yourself each day will allow you to continue feeling your best in your mind, body, and soul.

Make a Contact List

Have a list handy of healthy and supportive friends and family that you can call if you are having difficulty resisting an urge. It is also helpful to have a list of friends who are also in recovery to call for support. Having these people on hand to remind you of the reasons you do not want to repeat your old behavior patterns will be extremely helpful to move past your craving. This list will be an excellent resource to have on hand at all times to guide you through your recovery process.

Join Support Groups

Support programs are an important part of recovery. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and SMART Recovery provide support, education, accountability, and the opportunity to meet people who may be in a similar situation. Surrounding yourself in these environments may also lessen feelings of isolation and loneliness, which could be relapse triggers.

Know Your Triggers

Having the ability to identify your triggers is vital to the recovery process. By recognizing your internal and external triggers, you will be able to avoid them and prevent future relapse.

Relapse Prevention at Decision Point Center

The staff at Decision Point Center understands that relapse prevention is one of the most significant components of a recovery program. Together, we can identify the common relapse risk factors while developing ways to manage and cope with these situations.

Dial (844) 292-5010 or use our online form to learn more about our relapse prevention program and how we can help you on your road to recovery.

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