Relapse is part of the lifelong recovery of an addict. It’s so common that research shows the relapse rate among addicts who have gone through the detoxing process is 95%. Like cancer that goes into and out of remission, addiction is likely to resurface after some time. A relapse may cause the addict to develop feelings of hopelessness, shame, and regret, leading to addiction. Understanding this phenomenon is critical to knowing how to deal with loved ones who have relapsed. One question that lingers in most people’s minds is whether the addict needs to resume the long recovery process after a relapse. The next section explains types of relapses, what you should do, and whether you need to consult a doctor Fort Lauderdale.
Types of Relapses
There are two types of relapses: the traditional and the freelapse. A traditional relapse happens when you make a conscious decision to use drugs or drink. For example, you may decide to sniff heroin after two or more years of sobriety because you are confident you can manage it without going overboard.
On the other hand, a freelapse happens when you unintentionally take alcohol or use drugs. Also, you may unknowingly take steps towards a relapse months before actually drinking or taking drugs. Some trigger signs include.
- Lack of a support system: A newly recovered addict should look for a reliable support network after getting discharged from the rehab detox center. It makes the difference between relapsing and continued recovery
- Exposure to triggers: They include social (interacting with a friend using drugs) and environmental cues (coming into contact with places, objects, or places associated with drugs) that remind you about using alcohol and drugs
- Inadequate preparation for life after rehab: It’s important to have a relapse prevention plan to help transition to normal life. This means educating the recovering addict on how aspects like toxic friendships, dysfunctional family dynamics, and more can affect their sobriety
- Stress: High-stress levels can also lead to a relapse as the addict uses drugs or alcohol for relief. If you’re also experiencing negative emotions like depression, anger, and boredom you’re likely to relapse
What to Do After a Relapse
The first step is to determine if the addict needs to go back to a rehab center. If it was one incident and they are committed to adjusting the recovery care plan, admission to an inpatient facility may not be necessary.
This means the doctor Fort Lauderdale needs to supervise you more closely to ensure you adhere to the relapse prevention plan and any prescribed medication. The plan outlines underlying triggers for drug or alcohol use and a list of people who can be contacted for help. Since the consultations may not always happen in-person, you may get a prescription from a doctor online.
Look for a reliable self-help group too. It provides a platform for addicts to talk about their relapse experiences and know how other people have coped with similar situations.
Conversely, if you have fallen back into a consistent pattern of substance or alcohol abuse, you may need to resume a strict addiction treatment program. Upon resuming treatment, the doctor Fort Lauderdale uses different therapies to teach you how to deal with triggers. They include yoga, art and music therapy, equine therapy, and physical fitness. Other factors that determine whether you should attend an inpatient or outpatient program after relapse include:
- Type of drug used: Some drugs (alcohol, opioids) cause severe withdrawal symptoms. If you relapsed on such drugs, you may need an inpatient detox program to manage the withdrawal symptoms.
- Risk for further relapse: Recovering from a relapse is challenging when surrounded by triggers. Both inpatient and outpatient programs help deal with such triggers reducing the likelihood of relapsing in future
- The patient’s mental condition: If you have a mental health issue in addition to substance abuse, an inpatient program is befitting. This is because the program is equipped with the necessary tools to deal with co-occurring conditions
A relapse is a learning experience. While negative emotions of shame, guilt, and disappointment are likely to set in, it’s important to keep a positive mindset. Also get in touch with doctor Fort Lauderdale, and adhere to the outlined relapse prevention plan.