After a relapse, it may seem like you’re not going to be able to get back where you were before. Keep in mind that relapsing is a part of addiction recovery for some people, so you shouldn’t be too hard on yourself. Recognizing that you relapsed and that you want to get back on track is excellent and a sign of how far you’ve come.
Without proper treatment and support, many individuals who attempt to stop drinking will relapse. Alcohol addiction, like any disease, requires professional help to heal from. It is also a chronic disease meaning individuals will have to learn how to manage their addiction after treatment. Relapse doesn’t end an individual’s recovery. Rather, it is an expected part of the process that needs to be managed. Relapsing could be anything from having a single drink to going out on a binge. Relapsing doesn’t necessarily mean going back to a full-blown addiction. The counselors and therapists at Victory Bay Recovery Center can guide you through the addiction treatment process and show you how our aftercare programs can help individuals get back on the path to recovery after a relapse.
What Is a Relapse?
Regardless of the substance, a relapse happens when a person returns to using that substance after a period of abstinence. Everyone has a different idea of what relapsing is. For someone who used to drink daily in large quantities, having a single drink might not be a relapse. For someone else, having any alcohol at all would be one.
It’s important to set your own boundaries and understand your personal definition of relapsing, so you know what to do if you see warning signs that your dependency or addiction is beginning to spiral.
What Should You Do When a Relapse Happens?
When a relapse happens, the first thing to do is remember the steps you learned during treatment and recovery. Putting down the substance, being fair to yourself, and behind honest about what happened is important. Did you put yourself in a position where you were around your triggers? If so, it’s essential to remove yourself from that triggering situation.
When your relapse happens, you need to:
- Stop using the substance as soon as possible. This helps prevent dependency and addiction from forming again.
- Seek out support immediately. Call the people who support you, whether a counselor, therapist, medical doctor, or family member. They need to know that you’ve relapsed so that they can help you with the support you need to get back on track. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous can help offer a safe space to speak about what happened and why you believe you relapsed.
- Figure out what triggered you. Did you meet with an old friend who used to use substances with you? Did you go to a place where you used drugs in the past and find yourself meeting with the same people you bought them from before? Stop what you’re doing immediately and remind yourself of what there is to lose. Make a new commitment not to place yourself in triggering situations.
- Put together a plan to prevent future relapses.
Finally, put together a plan to help you prevent future relapses. Recognize your triggers, engage with your support system, and be aware that there are clinics and medical facilities available if you feel you need more support.
Relapsed? Don’t Let Your Relapse Last Longer Than It Needs To
At Victory Bay Recovery, we are here to help you get past your relapse and back on track. We know that it can be tough to deal with cravings or avoid triggers sometimes, but there are available supports. We offer extended care services and addiction recovery support, so you get more help in your everyday life. From intensive outpatient programs to group and family programs, we have much to offer. Call today at 855.259.1624, so we can help you find the right solution to get past this relapse and back into a state of sobriety.