If you or a loved one are searching for rehab... Read More
Written By Dr. Ashish Bhatt - Aug 28 2020
Table of Contents
Healing drug and alcohol addiction does not end once you’ve effectively completed a behavioral health treatment program. In fact, recovery is a lifelong process requiring a great deal of work and determination. The counseling, soul searching, and medical detox you received in treatment have equipped you with the skills you need to be successful. With many former users experiencing a relapse, it is essential to implement tips to prevent relapse.
One of the greatest factors in long-term recovery is a dedication to following a few essential tips to prevent relapse and lead a more fulfilling life.
Relapse is defined as regression after a period of improvement. Relapse can occur with a variety of medical conditions, such as diabetes or asthma. Addiction is a chronic brain disease in which intricate behavioral patterns have become embedded in the brain. The use of drugs or alcohol has changed the brain’s pathways responsible for pleasure, impulse control, and memory.
To successfully avoid relapse, learning to overcome these compulsive behaviors is crucial. If you or a loved one experience relapse, it should be considered a small stepping stone to recovery. It is not a failure. It just may indicate a need for adjustments to your treatment or perhaps more intensive rehab.
Legacy Healing Center’s treatment programs are specifically tailored to your individual needs. The length and intensity of drug use is a significant factor in determining the time frame for your treatment. Your behavioral health treatment will include several types of therapy to assist in analyzing your particular triggers, other co-occurring mental health issues, and your tolerance for distress. Medications are also often used to regulate mood, manage withdrawal symptoms, and minimize drug cravings. Medical professionals will monitor the effectiveness of the medications and ensure you have the proper doses. The longer you utilize your time in the program, the less likely you will be to relapse.
Fatigue and insomnia are prevalent side effects of withdrawal and can trigger a relapse. It is imperative to establish an adequate sleep schedule to help the body adjust to a healthier lifestyle.
Regular exercise remains a great way to prevent relapse because it can reduce stress and provide a more beneficial outlet for someone to work through stress. Getting in shape can also improve a person’s self-confidence and sense of self-worth. When getting into a workout routine, its also essential to establish a healthy diet, so you are replenishing the nutrients used when working out. Make sure you eat a balanced diet or fruits, vegetables, protein, water, and adequate vitamin supplementation.
One of the biggest triggers for relapse involves surrounding yourself with people who no longer serve your best interest. Unfortunately, it may be time to break ties with friends or family who are still actively using so you are not tempted to engage in behaviors you no longer wish to engage in. If at all possible, avoid people or places where drugs and alcohol may be consumed. Changing your environment will also help alleviate the temptation to use. If you frequently went to bars after work, you could find a nice park to visit or a fitness class to enjoy.
The journey to recovery is rewarding but won’t be without its challenges. Finding people who can support you and assist you when you’re struggling is vital. Whether you use your sponsor or friends and family, having a group of people you can count on will help tremendously when you need it. Lean on close friends and family members who support your recovery to distract you if you are having thoughts of using again.
Mindfulness activities and thought-challenging activities can significantly increase your chances of avoiding relapse. These techniques focus on bringing your thoughts back to the present to heighten awareness and provide clarity on the issues you’re experiencing and how to overcome any obstacle.
If you are struggling in your recovery or feel you need more intensive support to prevent relapse, please reach out to one of our addiction specialists at Legacy Healing Centers. We are available 24/7 and calls are completely confidential. 888-534-2295