When people relapse after a period of being sober it is greatly disheartening.
If you manage to stop yourself immediately, you can prevent yourself from falling deeper into your initial addiction It is a slip not a relapse.
However, instances have been noted where the individual has returned to full-time addiction. Some will never be able to get another opportunity to attain sobriety. It is very important that extreme effort is made to elude relapse since it can be deadly to many. Going back to addiction usually doesn't happen suddenly. Instead, there are normally warning symptoms of what is about to happen. You can avoid the problem if you can just notice the signs early enough.
Some of the usual signs that a person might be going towards relapse are: Aloofness: The person will start avoiding other people and will become more isolated.
The person may start lying or start to keep secrets. The person will not attend or will not share as much during Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and other such meetings.
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.
Lots of interest during the recovery: people stop accepting advice about how to stay sober and provided by the professionals to give an indication that they have given up on the procedure or have lost interest completely.
Rage and bitterness: The individual blames those around them because life in recovery is not turning out to be what they expected. A return to drugs and alcohol could be excused by these 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 will not be able to keep up this act for long even if they get to convince other people. Hitches that are not resolved can become a hindrance to recovery.
"Stinking thinking": This entails that people start having severely negative thoughts about their life without substance abuse. Its seems as though the individuals are searching for a reason to relapse.
Overconfidence: A well known saying should always be in your mind that the pride comes before fall. A person many be heading for disaster if they're to confident in their ability to stay clean. Individuals can quickly turn back to their addiction before they even understand what is going on since this can lead to carelessness. Recovery is a serious business, and people are considered most vulnerable when they don't think about the business of recovery similarly.
Feeling incapable of managing: This is an indication of a forthcoming relapse. Individuals are unable to think logically because they feel overcome. A yearning to elude the uneasiness simply leads people 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. They may begin to long for the last days. Past memories can trick the people into believing that their days earlier were much better than the present. Even the memory of trying their best to get away from the addiction maybe lost.
Addiction Substitution: This is where the individual takes help from new maladaptive behaviors to try to escape their difficulties in recovery. Exercising excessively or becoming obsessed with their job might be involved in it. Another mind-changing substance might be the choice of some people.
Dry Drunkenness: A dry drunk is a person who behaves like a person taking alcohol even though they are not actually drinking. Individuals like these may not have a commitment to sobriety and are therefore, likely to relapse without difficulties.
Hanging out with old friends: It can be hazardous if individuals go back to spending time with their former substance-abusing friends. Peer pressure can easily cause a person to relapse if they are not yet well grounded in their recovery.
Visiting drinking venues: Visiting a bar so long is usually safe for people with a strong recovery as they have a good reason to be there. Going to drinking venues so as to get indirect pleasure from looking at other people drink alcohol is risky. The idea of visiting places like these out of sheer boredom or loneliness is also a terrible habit. They say in AA that if you sit in a barber shop long enough, you will get your hair cut.
Keeping a tab on the warning signs of a return to addiction can be understood well enough if the context of the relapse process is considered.
We will tell you about numerous steps that illustrate what usually goes on with individuals before they relapse. Long before the person ever has a drink, the relapse process will start in the mind of the recovering alcoholic. These steps offer a helpful illustration of the way things usually develop, even though these steps won't occur with every individual. The relapse process goes something like this:
The individual quits making progress in recovery.
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. Life gets uncomfortable due to the lack of progress. To face these challenges, the person might adopt flawed coping techniques. Although it is easy for an individual to hide their internal uneasiness, it nonetheless continues to build up unrecognized.
The internal discomfort will rise to the surface whenever it gets an opportunity or a trigger event provides it an opportunity. This might even be an insignificant argument over some unimportant thing, but because irritation has been growing inside all the time, a person might overreact. Increased emotional turmoil may be experienced by the individual. Turning to alcohol or drugs was the way they have been coping with such situations in the past. People begin to feel that they are vulnerable to these emotions because they have attained sobriety. Thinking rationally and going on with a regular life becomes much more difficult because of this internal discomfort.
Other people may find the emotional unrest more obvious. Anger and agitation will become manifested more frequently. They might start acting unpredictably. When people reach this stage, he or she will usually stop doing the things that are required in order to maintain sobriety.
During this time, the feeling of being overwhelmed and going out of control was also be felt by the individual. Thinking about how substance abuse helped them to get away from life troubles is what they often do now. The desire to stay clean can't stop them from relapsing anymore.
People may need to take action through the following steps if they spot the warning signs of an impending relapse:
Focus on the reasons why they get rid of their addiction as well as their aspirations and expectations in recovery. Now is a good time to go back and read the journal if you have been keeping a recovery journal. Sobriety has to be made the most important thing in life. All other jobs should be relegated into the background until the individual is feeling secure and sober. They should not be taking additional responsibilities or making changes to their lives because the time certainly does not warrant it.
It is almost important that the individual discusses their relapse with someone who is going to be able to listen and provide the good suggestion. Their sponsor will be a good person to turn to if they belong to a 12 step group. Making an emergency appointment is strongly advised to the people who have a therapist. There might be someone to call in rehab if a person was recently released from it. Avoid being by yourself and find someone that you can talk to. Attend fellowship meetings more often during this period in case you're a member of one. Also it is suggested that they open up about their concerns while speaking at these gatherings.
If you have any friends with whom you used to drink or use drugs, make an effort to stay away from them. Visiting places where alcohol is served during moments of vulnerability is a bad idea for the recovering alcoholics. Making a wrong move at some point during your recovery is what causes people to relapse. They must retrace their steps to see where this occurred. A therapist or an individual who is highly reputable in their own recovery can be immensely beneficial to conduct this investigation with. Now is the right time to read motivational recovery material. This can assist in encouraging people to remain sober. Online addiction recovery resources are available and people can use them. Look out addiction helplines that are available any time of the day or night.
Making use of the helplines is especially vital in moments where an individual feels helpless.