Alcohol and drug addiction is a chronic disease. Studies suggest that an estimated 50% - 90% of recovering addicts have at least one relapse experience. Reasons for relapse include an array of daily stressors, ranging from frustration, anger and stress to confidence issues and altered emotional states. Learn more with the following and by setting goals to prevent relapse.
Relapse Prevention Tactics
Psychological And Medical Stabilization
Sobriety can only be achieved following psychological and medical stabilization. Once an addict has completed a safe, medical detox, the rehabilitation process can truly begin. During this initial period, addicts gain coping skills, education about their disease and techniques to help manage their emotions and feelings.
Acceptance That Relapse May Be Possible, But Can Be Overcome
Relapse is a very common aspect of the recovery process. Patients should understand that there is no shame in it. Those who conceal or hide their relapse may continue using secretly to avoid the embarrassment of a perceived failure.
Group Support Meetings
Attending Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous meetings regularly will work to minimize the risk of relapse. In fact, a study of 1,800 alcoholics has shown that those who choose a recovery without the support of a 12-step program were more prone to relapse. Other studies suggest that 90%+ of recovering addicts who attended 12-step meetings weekly and who received rehabilitation aftercare for a 12 month period successfully maintained their sobriety status throughout that year.
Recognize Your Relapse Triggers
Warning signs are extremely common prior to relapse. Each addict has different triggers that may prompt them to pick up the habit. For some it’s an inability to cope with financial issues or work-related anxiety; others run into trouble after seeing drugs or alcohol in a social setting. Knowing your triggers and how to handle them in a positive manner is the first step to prevention. The better prepared, the easier to abstain.
Quick Final Tips To Prevent Relapse
- Determine who best to lean on if you begin to notice relapse warning signs. Keep that individual’s contact information on you in case a craving hits unexpectedly.
- Wait 30 minutes before letting your cravings get the best of you. Urges will generally last between 15 and 30 minutes. Determine an activity to occupy yourself, breathe and think positive. You will prevail!
- Play out the consequences of your relapse: How it might affect your family, employment and mood. Remember how far you’ve come, and how hard you’ve worked to get there.
- Avoid situations and people that make you feel the need to use.
- Take your recovery day by day. Though combating relapse long-term may seem next to impossible, the next 24 hours is well within your grasp.
- Think logically! Look ahead
Searching for a relapse prevention program? Contact Decision Point Center today! With the knowledge and experience necessary to properly address your needs and goals, you can count on Decision Point Center to have you on the fast track to success in no time. Call today!