When people relapse after a period of being sober it is greatly disheartening.
Some of those might be able to avoid disaster by quitting straight away after reacting that way in the heat of the moment. This is known as a slip rather than a relapse.
However, in many cases, the individual will make a full return to active addiction. A chance to get sober will never be an option for some. It is important that you try as much as possible to avoid a relapse because it could easily end in death. A return to addiction doesn't usually happen out of the blue. In most situations, what is going to happen comes with warning signs. To avoid adversity an individual must have the ability to spot these tell-tale signs.
Some of the usual signs that a person might be going towards relapse are: Isolation: This is where the individual get into cutting themselves off from other people.
They begin acting deceitfully or even mysteriously. People who attend meeting of support groups, and AA will discontinue the practice without warning.
Frustration: The person will start to feel like their recovery is stuck in a rut and they'll no longer feel like they're moving forward.
Loss of interest in recovery: People quit doing the things they need to maintain sobriety as if they have run out of steam or completely lost interest.
Anger and bitterness: Individuals might feel like their expectations about life in recovery were wrong and they might feel like their loved ones are causing this. The person will get an excuse to start using again based on such emotions.
Denying their situation: If life after the addiction is far from ideal yet the person won't admit to this fact, this could be a major problem. They can deceive others but self-deception is only temporary. The recovery process can be seriously hampered by any issue that isn't resolved.
Stinking thinking: this is the time when people adopt a negative attitude about their lives away from addiction. It is as if they are trying to get an excuse to relapse.
Overconfidence: As the saying goes, pride surely precedes a fall. A person many be heading for disaster if they're to confident in their ability to stay clean. It can lead to complacency, and people can return within the midst of addiction before they even realise it. Recovery is a serious business, and people are considered most vulnerable when they don't think about the business of recovery similarly.
Feeling unable to cope: an imminent relapse often exhibits signs of the individual not coping with the recovery. Individuals are unable to think logically because they feel overcome. They begin to feel extreme discomfort, which can lead them back to addiction.
Romancing about the drink or drug: this is the stage when people begin to remember the times they were happy by being a substance abuser. Such a person may start to miss the days when they used to drink or use a drug. There are times when memory can trick you into thinking that the past was better than it really was. Even the memory of trying their best to get away from the addiction maybe lost.
New Addictions: The person may start to engage in other unhealthy behaviours in an attempt to avoid their hardships. Exercising excessively or becoming obsessed with their job might be involved in it. Some individuals will develop another habit of using other mind-altering substances.
Behaving like a dry drunk: This where people have quit drinking or abusing drugs but continue to behave much like they did before. Such individuals may relapse more easily as they have a weak dedication to sobriety.
Spending time with the old crowd: It can be highly dangerous if the individuals move back to spending time with their old drinking or drug using chaps. Group pressure can influence individuals into relapse if they have a fragile recovery.
Going to drinking places: If a person has a strong reason to be in a bar and a solid recovery as well, then it doesn't have to be dangerous. It is hazardous when people visit these drinking venues in order to get derivative pleasure from watching other people abuse alcohol. Going to these places out of loneliness is also a terrible idea. They say in AA that if you sit in a barber shop long enough, you will get your hair cut.
In the relapse process setting is where we can comprehend the signs cautioning a return to addiction.
This is a sequence of the process that suggests what usually happens before people relapse. Long before the person ever has a drink, the relapse process will start in the mind of the recovering alcoholic. This description is useful in getting to see how the relapse happens although the events don't happen the same way for everyone. The relapse process goes something like this:
The person doesn't make progress in recovery anymore.
This occurs as a result of being faced with a task they feel incompetent or reluctant to deal with. They try to ignore the signs that they have quit making progress. They find life becoming uncomfortable because of the lack of progress. People tend to turn to dangerous mechanisms to handle this. People may possibly be able to bury their internal discomfort, but it will continue to bubble away unnoticed.
This internal pain will then be exhibited when a trigger situation offers a chance for this. It can be a minor argument over a trivial issue, but the individual tends to overreact because of the tension which has been building within over a period of time. The individual will start to feel growing emotional havoc. In the past, using drugs or alcohol is how the person used to deal with this kind of problem. They may feel particularly vulnerable to these emotions as they are sober now. Living life normally becomes much harder with all the issues bubbling underneath the surface that will be preventing the person from thinking clearly.
Other people may find the emotional unrest more obvious. Anger and agitation will become manifested more frequently. They may have unpredictable behaviour. The individual who has gotten to this point will discontinue any efforts to maintain sobriety.
The individual now feels overwhelmed and out of control. They devote a lot of time to thinking about how drugs or alcohol once permitted them to escape life's problems. The drive to remain sober is now no longer sufficient enough to stop them from relapsing.
People may need to take action through the following steps if they spot the warning signs of an impending relapse:
Concentrate on their hopes and desires in recovery and why they decided to stop with their addiction. Now might be a great time to go back and read your recovery diary if you have been writing one. Make remaining sober the main concern in life. Everything else has to take a backseat until the individual is feeling safer in abstinence. Now is not the time to be making important life changes or taking on new responsibilities.
It is essential to the individual to share their fears about a relapse with an individual who is willing and able to listen and offer good advice. In the event where an individual belongs to a 12 step group, the persons sponsor is the best person to turn to. An emergency appointment with a therapist is recommended. You can get in touch with someone you used to talk to at the treatment centre in case you just recently let the clinic. Talking to somebody and avoiding isolation is the important thing. During this crucial moments individuals belonging to a group are encouraged to attend often. We strongly recommend them to share their concerns while discussing at these meetings.
Totally evade previous drinking or drug abusing associates during this period. People who are feeling vulnerable should be looking forward to staying away from places where alcohol is served because they are after all recovering addicts. Taking a wrong turn somewhere in the recovery is the reason that makes people relapse. Go back over everything you've done and see where you went wrong. Going through this exercise with a person who is more firmly rooted in their own recovery or a counsellor can be very helpful. Reading inspirational recovery material seems like a good idea at this time. It can provide people who need the motivation to remain sober. Online addiction recovery resources are available and people can use them. There are helplines for addicts that are open at all times and you should make use of these to get advice.
Making use of the helplines is especially vital in moments where an individual feels helpless.