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What is a Relapse Prevention Program?

2022-11-11 18:23:17

What is a Relapse Prevention Program?

Completing a drug treatment program is a significant life milestone. Your hard work and determination in addressing and overcoming your addiction should make you feel a great sense of personal accomplishment. While completing a rehab program is a cause for celebration, it doesn’t mean that your recovery is complete. In fact, the real work in recovery begins the minute you resume your normal day-to-day life. To minimize the risk of relapse in your recovery, you must have a solid relapse prevention program in place.

This article will explain what relapse is and the common causes of relapse. Most importantly, you will learn your role in preventing relapse and the importance of relapse aftercare.

What is a Relapse?

For many people, relapse is defined as a return to active drug use after a period of abstinence. In reality, relapse occurs long before you pick up a drink or drug. Relapse can be seen as occurring in three distinct stages:

  • Emotional relapse —this stage of relapse is marked by the bottling up of emotions, increasing mood swings, and a growing intolerance towards other people. You may still be going to meetings and using other rehab aftercare tools, but you aren’t putting in full effort.
  • Mental relapse—mental relapse is marked by increased cravings and urges to use. Telltale signs of mental relapse include hanging around old using friends and having fantasies about using drugs and alcohol once again. You start rationalizing scenarios where drug use would be “acceptable”
  • Physical relapse— this final stage of relapse is when you actually start using substances after a period of sobriety. Once you resume use, you have overwhelming feelings of guilt and shame.

What Are The Common Causes of Relapse?

You can relapse for a variety of reasons. One common factor for relapse is experiencing prolonged periods of mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. Also, relapse is often triggered by unresolved stress and frustration. As stated in the previous section, relapse occurs if you start associating with using friends or begin to frequent places that you used substance. As also discussed earlier, you are vulnerable to relapse if you start missing meetings, reducing the frequency of meetings, or stop going to self-help meetings altogether.

Additional reasons why people relapse include a lack of motivation working a relapse prevention program and feeling that your recovery is at a plateau and you can move forward. If you feel yourself inching towards relapse, you need to implement healthy coping skills into your daily routine. Practicing a solid relapse prevention program goes a long way in preventing relapse and helps you maintain your physical, mental, and psychological health.

What is a Relapse Prevention Program?

Simply defined, a relapse prevention program consists of techniques and tools that are designed to prevent relapse during and after addiction treatment. The key to preventing relapse is identifying the triggers that make you vulnerable to relapse. Once discovered, you can learn the appropriate and healthy coping mechanisms that will help preserve your hard-earned recovery. A relapse prevention program is a collaborative effort between you and an addiction treatment professional. This plan is created during the later stages of treatment and can be verbal or formally written out for you to follow. As you progress in your recovery, you can re-evaluate your relapse prevention program and find new coping skills to master and eliminate those mechanisms that are not working in your recovery.

Why is Relapse Prevention Crucial After Rehab Ends?

Having a rehab aftercare program in place is crucial for long-term recovery. Not only do you learn healthy coping skills, but you also learn the importance of self-care. Proper self-care includes having a balanced diet, practicing proper hygiene, and restful sleep. Self-care also includes attending self-help meetings, working with a sponsor and practicing mindful meditation techniques. Importantly, preventing relapse means being honest with yourself and asking for help when you feel vulnerable.

Are You in Need of Help?

If you are struggling with addiction, the first step is admitting you have a problem and finding professional help. While there are many excellent treatment options, a luxury rehab provides top-tier programs, care, and accommodations that give you the tools and support you need to find lasting recover. Finding Luxury Rehabs works with a vast network of facilities that offer evidence-based programs and services that are effective and proven to work. Let us help you find lasting health and peace of mind. Call us today.


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