Four Signs That A Recovering Addict May Relapse

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Young man admitting that he is an alcoholic during support group meeting

Relapse is a primary concern in the field of drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Many addicts and alcoholics have been through rehab only to find themselves in a relapse scenario. For some, rehab has become a nightmare revolving door. An effective drug rehab program would have to contain certain key elements:

  1. Medically supervised detoxification wherein the person is ultimately no longer dependent on any drug, i.e., not on a replacement drug. The use of medication to gradually bring a person off opiates, psychotropic medication, and other chemicals may be necessary at first, but the end result is that all drugs have been tapered off, and no drugs whatsoever are needed. If you want more information, learn more about medication-assited treatment for Opiod help.
  2. Addressing the root causes of the addiction: why the individual turned to drugs, to begin with; the personal, familial, social, environmental, mental, and spiritual factors that contributed to protracted drug use are addressed effectively. For example, the person may have no clue as to how to handle other people or situations in life. By educating with real know-how, we put someone in a much better position to solve life’s dilemmas without turning to “chemical escape.”
  3. Repairing the damage caused by drug abuse. An addict or alcoholic has to face up to the damage he or she caused. This could be part of a 12-Step program or other methodology, but the general theory is the same. He or she has to take some responsibility and possibly make some amends. This step is not effective with a “finger pointing” mentality. It is a step of compassion for all concerned.
  4. Relapse prevention is an absolutely essential step. The person came from an environment that encouraged drug use. Is he or she now going straight back into that same situation? Each person’s case is different: old friends who are still on drugs, peer pressure, proximity to locations where dealers and users congregate, parties where alcohol is flowing freely. An effective program must-have steps to prepare for these scenarios. Graduates of a rehab program may need to move to another city altogether. Each case is unique.

The Most Important Element

There is one final element that is the make or break of the rehabilitation process. It is the one factor that holds all the others in place: the willingness of the individual. With no willingness, there is virtually nothing that can be done. With willingness, anything can be overcome. The “power of choice” must be present. While no one can guarantee an addict or alcoholic will never relapse, there are many things you can do to appeal to the individual’s power of choice. Perhaps the cumulative effect of failure has depleted the person of this willingness. It could be buried deep and hasn’t seen the light of day in years, but it can usually be tapped into.

Holistic Recovery

The best recovery system would be one that tailors a program to the individual’s needs. Holistic rehabilitation means addressing the personal, familial, social, environmental, mental, and spiritual aspects of drug and alcohol addiction. Holistic recovery means the individual now lives a rewarding existence, free from the grips of any mind-altering substance.