Have you just completed or nearing the completion of a drug treatment program?
Believe it or not, successfully completing a drug treatment program is a significant accomplishment. You spent many hours addressing and finally overcoming your addiction through your hard work and tears. As you are ready to leave treatment, you look and feel great and have the confidence to take on the world. While your confidence is sky-high, just remember one thing:
The end of treatment does not mean the end of your recovery.
The reality is that the real work in your recovery begins when you leave treatment. While you may not want to think about it, relapse is often a part of recovery. It is estimated that 40 to 60 of those in recovery will experience a relapse. To minimize the risk of relapse in your recovery, it is highly recommended that you participate in relapse prevention programs. Addiction relapse prevention allows you to stay motivated and empowered in your sobriety, and it gives you the best chance at realizing long-term recovery.
For those who are newly recovered, the world seems wide open and brand new. In sobriety, recovering addicts can feel overwhelmed in their home environment. Without the familiar crutches of substances, the stressors and temptations that appear in their daily lives can slowly push them to the limit. If those stressors are not dealt with in a positive and healthy manner, it significantly increases the risk of relapse.
What are the reasons that people relapse after working so hard to get sober? There are various reasons why people relapse once they complete treatment. Perhaps the most common reason is they start hanging out with old friends that still use substances, or they return to the places they once used drugs and alcohol. The sights, sounds, and smells of those old environments often trigger powerful memories, and over time they can become too powerful to resist.
Another reason why people relapse is they stop being proactive in working on their individual recovery programs. In early recovery, people are still in their “honeymoon” phase. Since they look and feel the best they have in years, they may feel they have been “cured” of addiction and don’t need to continue to work on their recovery. Others may feel stuck in recovery and feel that they can’t go any further. Additionally, people who relapse either don’t have the coping skills necessary to reduce the risk of relapse or are not using the skills they learned in treatment.
Relapse prevention programs (also known as aftercare programs) are personalized programs that recognize the particular behaviors that can cause an individual to relapse. Recovery prevention plans consider one’s triggers, stressors, and personal history of substance abuse. With this information, the treatment staff creates a plan that will help the newly recovering individual minimize relapse risk. Addiction relapse prevention plans are usually created 30 days prior to the completion of a treatment program.
Relapse prevention programs are important in a number of ways. First and foremost, these programs help newly recovering people understand that relapse happens before they actually pick up a substance. In reality, relapse occurs when people bottle up emotions and start being passive in working their program. Eventually, they begin to feel the cravings and urges to use substances. If those cravings and urges are not addressed, they can push a person to use drugs and alcohol once again.
The following are essential reasons why relapse prevention programs are crucial for long-term recovery:
Have you completed treatment and need the extra tools and support to stay sober? If you are in Southern California, Sober Minds Recovery Center is your first choice. Our premier treatment facility offers aftercare programs that are evidence-based and personalized to meet your unique and specific needs. Our integrated approach to treatment addresses you in mind, body, and soul. Our dedicated and experienced treatment staff will provide a safe and non-judgmental environment that allows you to be empowered and confident in your newfound sobriety.
Take your recovery to the next level with the help of Sober Minds Recovery Center.