Triggers. Temptations. Pitfalls. They exist in copious amounts during the holidays. And they run the gamut! Diets are destroyed, political barriers are blown away, norms are tossed out the window, and a lot of that is accepted – even joked about – during this time of year. This sort of attitude toward temptation can be doubly horrid for someone who is on their sobriety or recovery journey. Addicts run into all manner of additional temptations during the holiday season, made worse by the fact that traveling, socializing, sleeping in guest rooms, etc. can all have a detrimental effect on the body and mind. We’ve put together a few tips to help you ensure that a Thanksgiving and Christmas season entered sober can be gone through and exited sober as well.
Over the past years, relapses have taken the lives of addicts and alcoholisms all around the world — people who have been struggling to live another day. Unfortunately, too many succumb to chemical dependency, despite measures taken by local and federal government against the opioid epidemic in the United States.
No one person or organization can be blamed solely for this rise in relapse rates. For many, getting clean is a long and messy process, and failure points are in abundance. Admitting is one thing, but accepting is what can prevent a relapse and lower relapse rates over time.
Relapse is not uncommon amongst recovering drug addicts. According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), relapse rates range from 40 to 60 percent. It is possible for an addiction to be cured, or managed, but it’s a long journey ahead. An addict may ask themselves, why did I relapse and what does this mean for my recovery?
Relapse Doesn’t Mean Failure at Recovery
Relapsing means that you are slipping back into the former state you were in before going into treatment. It is normal for someone recovering from addiction to lapse back into drug use.
Going through a relapse shows that you must return to the previous treatment, or try a new treatment. You should reevaluate the events that led up to the relapse in order to prevent another one from happening.
Not everyone is equally strong and has the same willpower. Thoughts about drugs or alcohol are a common thing after detox, and they’re completely normal. If you, or someone you love still long for an addictive substance from the past, even after you’ve been officially “clean” for a while, don’t beat yourself about it. It’s important to understand the most common triggers and prevent them by minimizing the chances of responding to them. Here are some tips for relapse prevention.