What to Do If You Have a Relapse
February 6, 2017 - Drugs - 0 Comments
Before going to what to do in case of a relapse, first, you need to understand the meaning of the term itself. So, what is the meaning of a relapse? It is the process of going back to drug use for an addict who has recovered. It can also be identified as the reappearance of a disease that had been cured. Since addiction is considered a chronic disease, the sufferer is prone to undergo periods of relapse. One or two episodes are commonly experienced during the recovery journey. Drugs differ in their relapse severity, some could have mild symptoms but others such as marijuana and opioids could have dangerous withdrawal effects.
Luckily for families, relatives, close friends and caregivers, relapses do not just happen without giving you telltale signs. This knowledge will help save a life of a loved one if understood.
The signs are broadly categorized into emotional, mental and physical relapse and can be noticed when addicts;
- Miss out on therapy sessions and programs which aim to keep them sober. When asked, reasons such as feeling uncomfortable with being reminded of their past come up.
- Reminisce about the good old days. In conversations, you may notice that they romanticize on their drug using days.
- Abrupt change in attitude and behavior. They become moody and overreact on petty issues. At times you may also notice that they personalize problems.
- Begin to search for their old friends who were in their circle of drug abuse such as drinking buddies.
- Become extremely defensive when questioned on their recent attitude change
- Slowly quit on the coping strategies and healthy conducts taught to them at the drug and alcohol rehab.
Now that you know what signs to look out for when helping out a close friend or relatives going into relapse, you need to know what steps to take when it does happen.
If you are the addict, the ball is in your court. You need to assess and determine whether going back to the drug and alcohol rehab is your best chance or not. Have you gone back to your old drinking pattern? If so, rehab is the best option but if it is just a mishap, then don’t miss out on your 12-step meetings and you will be right on track.
Relapse is always accompanied by feelings of shame and regret. This, therefore, calls for a deeper emphasis on therapy – specifically Cognitive Behavioral Therapy which is hailed for its success in teaching alternative responses to problems. Recovering addicts through this are able to open up when facing challenges instead of feeling suicidal.
After going into relapse your focus should be on going back to your normal life. This can be achieved through living in a sober environment. Understand your triggers, maybe it is the neighborhood you live in, the company you keep or some uncured psychiatric problems you may have. Once you know what led you back to drug abuse, get away from them and recover in a trigger-free environment.
Ask your drug and alcohol rehab treatment center to draft an outpatient plan for you to continue therapy while at home. This will help keep you in check and boost your motivation. The success of this plan is largely your effort, but support from family and close friends is required. Let them in and ask for their support in reaching your desired goals.
If you feel that you are still struggling yet you have done all that is required of you, do not keep quiet. Reach out and ask for help whether it is from family members, friends, or your therapist. They will also seek out for help from more qualified drug and alcohol treatment centers.
His and Her Houses offers industry leading Drug Addiction Treatment programs. We were founded in 1994 and we base our programs on five key principles: commitment, honesty, integrity, respect, and service. These five principles guide us in all that we do and all the care we provide. Contact us today to see how we can help you or your love one at (888) 376-7268