Addiction Relapse Prevention Techniques and Avoiding Triggers
A majority of addicts, especially ones in recovery, would agree that addiction is a battle which is lifelong. The choice to become sober can be a difficult one, and usually does not get easier from there. A major misconception about recovery from addiction is that once someone completes addiction treatment and gets clean, they have recovered. However, recovery is not a one-time accomplishment. It is a journey that is ongoing and one that is not without its share of bumps along the way. In fact, you will likely have to beat it more than once.
For many in recovery from addiction, this probably rings true. Relapses do happen, and in fact, it is estimated that forty to sixty percent of recovering drug addicts go through relapse at some point. This percentage is very similar to the relapse rates of other chronic illnesses like Asthma, Type 1 Diabetes, and Hypertension.
This statistic should not discourage, but rather encourage addicts who are struggling with relapse, as they can know that they are not alone in their struggles. By arming yourself with the knowledge and tools to bounce back from a relapse, or even better, prevent it from happening to begin with, helps you lead a successful, sober life.
Usually brought on by triggers, relapses can happen suddenly. Any interaction, event, or relationship can cause an addict to justify using again. Triggers usually fall into one of three categories including environmental, emotional, or exposure. They are often founded on old memories or routines, so they vary from person to person.
Avoiding Triggers to Prevent Relapse
Some common triggers include exposure to drugs of abuse or negative emotions which stimulate drug seeking behavior like anger, stress, frustration, fear, anxiety, guilt, loneliness or depression. Triggers can also include locations, friends or events which remind you of using, sensing or seeing an object of addiction, social pressures to use, using other substances, or positive emotional states where you are having fun and wanting to feel even better than you do already.
Particular situations can make relapse more likely. Conflict with someone, the loss of a loved one, health problems, a change in marital status, boredom, and major financial changes are all circumstances which and lead to a relapse. Some warning signs to look out for include a self-pitying attitude, overconfident attitude, dishonesty, changes in sleep, appetite, or personal hygiene, hangout with people from the days of drug use, or sudden changes in routine and behavior that is irresponsible like skipping work, school or appointments.
Preventing addiction relapses is not easy, but it is possible. The best thing you can do is to be as prepared as you can. You should know what your triggers are and have a support system to help you avoid them, plus keep an eye out for warning signs, this is what Addicts Helpline treatment centers has success in. You can also void places and people that make you want to use and attend support groups or therapy where you can talk about what you are dealing with. Of course, you also should at all costs avoid any exposure to alcohol and drugs. In general, you can greatly improve your quality of life by maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Preventing Relapse Together
Some people use the acronym HALT, or Hunger, Anger, Loneliness and Tiredness. It serves as a warning system to let you know you are off balance. Take a moment and conduct a self-assessment to address any of these feelings before they get out of control. Using HALT helps to keep you mentally, physically, and emotionally prepared for situations and triggers you can face.