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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Relapse Prevention In Early Recovery

People who complete an addiction treatment program understand that they must do everything humanly possible to avoid relapse. Such individuals grasp that if they do not take steps each day to keep their addiction at bay, the disease will creep back to the forefront. In treatment, addicts and alcoholics are taught many skills and are introduced to various tools to help them cope with the stressors and difficulties of life. A failure to utilize such resources can quickly turn a molehill into an actual mountain.

Addiction is a complex disorder; and, like any mental illness, symptoms can manifest in unsuspecting ways. In many cases, people who relapse are those who thought they were doing everything right only to end up with a drink or drug in their hand. Merely put, the disease can sneak up on individuals, and in practically no time at all old behaviors can spring up. When signs of an imminent relapse become apparent, it is critical that efforts are made to nip selfishness, dishonesty, and addictive thinking in the bud.

If you finished an addiction treatment program of late, it is likely you learned some of the warning signs of relapse. Of course, people learn a lot in rehab, and it can be easy to forget about some the hazardous markers that can throw a wrench in the gear-works of recovery.


Some Signs Imminent Relapse

Meeting makers, make it, a recovery saying that makes a lot of sense. Those who make a point of getting to their support group as much as possible are far less likely to act in ways discordant with recovery. Early on, many recovering addicts attend meetings with enthusiasm; and, for some people, their zest for attending meetings begins to wane as the months pass. Attending meetings may not be the most fun, there are probably some other things many people would instead be doing. But, making a point of getting to the group is an opportunity, or rather an exercise in accountability; both to other persons and most importantly to one’s recovery.

If the amount and frequency of attendance slip, it is critical that such people make efforts to correct course. The value of opening up and listening to others on a regular basis cannot be overestimated. Attending meetings is one of the few opportunities to get feedback about problems and glean insight on how to overcome a particular situation. Last week, we covered the topic of utilizing your support group; naturally, meetings are an example of times that you can foster recovery relationships and protect against relapse. If you see that you are losing interest in meetings and spending time with people who share the goal of progress, then you are at risk of reconnecting with people from your past. Naturally, reaching out to people whom you used with is a precursor of relapse.

Your environment and the company you keep plays a significant role in recovery. Spending time with old friends or frequenting old haunts may not bring on a relapse right away, but if the behavior doesn't change immediately, a slope back to use is almost guaranteed.


Keeping On In Recovery

Addiction recovery asks a lot from individuals, notably a daily commitment to working a program. Those who go through treatment put in a lot of work and invest much time in service to turning one’s life around. If you are not going to as many meetings, avoiding your support group, or rekindling old relationships, then please act now to prevent losing that which you worked so hard to achieve—freedom from drugs and alcohol.

For those who have yet to seek help for alcohol or substance use disorder, please reach out to The Haven at Pismo to discuss treatment options. Our team of addiction professionals provides clients with medically supervised and top-quality care.