When you are in recovery, relapsing is, unfortunately, always a possibility. A relapse is an ongoing process that is marked by warning signs. Having a relapse prevention plan enables you to identify and address these warning signs. This post will discuss relapse prevention, highlighting five things you need to include in your relapse prevention plan and the role Northern Illinois Recovery Center can play in your recovery.
What Are The Stages Of Relapse?
A relapse happens when someone recovering from a substance abuse disorder, goes back to using drugs. It involves more than having cravings or being presented with opportunities for using substances again. Instead, it is a combination of factors, triggers, and elements that might lead you to act on your cravings.
Relapse happens in three stages. These stages are emotional, mental, and, finally, the physical stage, each having corresponding warning signs. Some of the symptoms experienced in the emotional stage include feelings of anxiety, irritability, and depression. Such feelings could lead to an inner conflict, which triggers the mental stage.
During the mental stage, you might romanticize drug use, spend time with people still using, and only recall the good memories of substance use. Allowing these feelings and thoughts to foster without addressing them leads to the physical stage, which is where someone is actively using substances again. Fortunately, there are mechanisms and measures you could put in place to help you avoid relapsing.
What Should a Relapse Prevention Plan Look Like?
Going through the symptoms associated with relapse is common. However, having a way to manage these symptoms prevents you from reaching the physical stage. A relapse prevention plan is essential for that. Learning how to make one and properly implementing it could be crucial in helping you avoid repeated relapse.
Each plan is unique to every individual. However, there are certain components that every plan should have.
These are the things, places, and people that could potentially lead you to use again. It can be difficult identifying all your potential triggers. You might even not be aware of some of them until they happen to you. However, having them written down will help you know what to avoid.
Cravings are the feelings you have when you wish to use it again. Having a plan on managing your cravings go a long way in preventing relapses. Include a list of the people you can call or things you can do to either stop the cravings or distract you.
Have a list of things you can do instead of using it. These could include certain activities ranging from attending meetings to journaling or exercising. Contacting someone who is supporting you through your recovery can also be a helpful preventative tool.
List of Support Groups Or Programs
Having a list of support groups or programs you could seek out can also be helpful. Focusing on such options could help you find the support that could encourage you to maintain your sobriety.
Your plan could also include the things you will try to implement to fix the areas in your life that were damaged by substance abuse. This could remind you of how bad certain areas were before recovery. The progress made can be a significant motivator for your sobriety, further being a deterrent to relapsing.
Seeking Addiction Treatment
If you are battling a substance abuse disorder, now is the time to seek treatment. There are treatment methods readily available. These options are such as:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy
- Gender-specific rehab
- Intensive outpatient and residential programs
- Detox programs
At Northern Illinois Recovery Center, we have a team of professionals ready to work with you throughout your recovery, providing you with a treatment designed to your specific needs. To further ensure a lasting recovery, we are also ready to help you with the tools that facilitate relapse prevention. Contact Northern Illinois Recovery Center at 855.786.1978 today and begin your journey to sobriety.