When it comes to addiction recovery, most people assume that once they go through rehab, they will be good to go for the rest of their lives. However, they overlook the importance and necessity of relapse prevention as a part of the treatment process. In order to maintain sobriety for the many years to come, relapse prevention is not only a recommendation but a necessity. In this practice, users will be able to ward off future warning signs of usage to come through relapse prevention techniques and tools.
A set of tactics, coping strategies, treatments, and therapies that are designed to stop relapse in the early stages or to prevent it from beginning.
Relapse occurs in three distinct stages that progress in order. However, just because a person enters into the early stages does not mean that they will inevitably go through with it. Using prevention tactics and strategies can reverse and stop it in its tracks.
This is an unconscious stage of relapse. In other words, the recovering addict has no intention of resuming substance abuse or addictive behaviors. Rather it is feelings or patterns of behavior that can lead up to substance abuse and addiction. The key concept is to be able to recognize these behaviors and emotions that can lead to further issues. Some of the signs include:
Emotional awareness is the most important task in prevention. This task is started in initial addiction treatment and continued in aftercare. This awareness of emotions has to do with individual and group therapy. However, other treatments may be more effective at developing emotional awareness including art and music therapy. Additionally, creating art and music are ways to cope that channels those emotions into productive and non-harmful activities.
Mental relapse, unlike emotional, is conscious and aware. In this stage, the person’s mind begins to betray them, rendering them incapable in many cases of resolving the situation by simple methods such as art or music therapy. Some of the signs include:
When in this phase, the most important step a recovering addict can take is to ask for help and to realize that they cannot trust their own mind and rationalizations. As such, attending support group meetings, seeking out therapy and counseling, and talking to sponsors are important steps.
One method of dealing with it is to think through the process all the way to its conclusion. In other words, think beyond the immediate and instant gratification of actually using the substance and consider the consequences and what will come after the fact. Realizing what the person is risking by going through with those thoughts will help the recovering addict to overcome the urges.
Physical relapse is the resumption of substance use and abuse and involves actually purchasing and using the substance. Once in this stage, there is nothing to do prevention-wise other than to start over in the recovery and begin again. While this is a setback, a recovering addict can learn from their mistakes and prevent future recurrences.
Relapse prevention is an important element on the way to recovery. Chandler Drug Treatment Centers can help you to get the education you need to overcome your addiction and stay sober for the rest of your life. Give them a call at (602) 358-2954 when you are ready to get addiction recovery treatment.