Sometimes you don’t even see the biggest obstacles to maintaining recovery after addiction coming. In the first year after completing a professional treatment program, over 85 percent of newly sober individuals will experience a setback, also known as relapse. The best way to arm yourself against relapse triggers is to be aware and prepared. Here are some of the more common relapse triggers and how to avoid them.
1. Underlying Mental Health Issues
If you did not enter a dual-diagnosis treatment plan equipped to treat co-occurring disorders, there might be additional conditions that may impact your substance use disorder. These mental health issues can arise without warning and increase the urge for substance misuse before you even understand what has happened. Anxiety is common after recovering from a substance use disorder and can be a persistent trigger.
Avoid by: Speaking with a mental health professional. If you do not already have a connection with a professional, Colorado addiction treatment resources are available to assist you in finding these services. Do not wait until there is a problem to talk to someone. Speaking openly and honestly with a mental health professional can only enhance recovery, whether there is an underlying mental health issue or not.
2. New You, Old Routine
Revisiting old common places to hang out, being around the same friend group you had prior to treatment, or doing activities that went in conjunction with substance misuse can all lead to setbacks or addiction relapse. Doing the same routine with the same people, places, and things can trigger the urge to go back to old habits or ways of living. Revisiting these can reignite strong and compelling memories that could lead back to a life of substance misuse.
Avoid by: Finding new people to spend time with, places to hang out and things to do. You are living as a new, sober self and should approach your life as a new beginning. Take this opportunity to meet other like-minded people, explore new places, and find new activities that you may have never thought to pursue before when life was dominated by regular substance use.
3. Nothing Better To Do
“I’m bored” can be two words that lead to an addiction relapse. A major part of life for a person dealing with a substance use disorder is the substance misuse itself. When that is taken away through the life-changing and healing process of treatment, there can be a great void that can turn to boredom when left unchecked. For many people, boredom is a negative emotion and does not always spawn positive results.
Avoid by: Keeping busy! Make a daily list of things to accomplish or new activities to try. In addition to attending support groups, find other groups that meet who share a common interest, like a book club or sports team. Keep an open dialogue with friends, sponsors, therapists, and even physicians so that your support network can be aware if you seem to be drifting off course and allowing boredom to creep in. Communicating with others and scheduling daily tasks are two great routines to develop when working through addiction relapse triggers.
Recovery will forever have its triumphs and trials. If you feel that relapse triggers are impacting your life negatively, the good news is that you never have to feel alone or without help. The Recovery Village Palmer Lake can help. Contact us today to find out more about treatment options and aftercare support.