Relapsing is usually a great source of disappointment for a person in recovery.
Individuals who spontaneously pick up are able to avoid calamity by discontinuing immediately This is known as a slip rather than a relapse.
In many cases, however, a person will completely go back to regular addiction. Some will never be able to get another opportunity to attain sobriety. It is important that every effort is made to avoid relapse because it can be a death sentence. Relapses however don't just happen without cause. Instead, there are normally warning symptoms of what is about to happen. The individual will be able to prevent catastrophe if they are able to spot these tell-tale signs.
Some of the usual signs that a person might be going towards relapse are: Isolation: When the individual begins to stay away from others.
They begin to keep secrets and even tell lies. The person will not attend or will not share as much during Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and other such meetings.
Feeling of stagnation in recovery: When people feel a lack of progress it makes people upset.
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. These feelings provide people the excuses they need to return to alcohol or drugs.
Dismissal of problems: Denying problems they experience with staying sober is one of the worst things someone in recovery can do. They can deceive others but self-deception is only temporary. 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. It is as if they are trying to get an excuse to relapse.
Overconfidence: that is a well-known proverb which says, "pride comes before a fall." People might be building a road to catastrophe if they are too confident about their recovery. Complacency can be caused due to this and people can return to the midst of addiction before they even understand what has happened. Recovery is no joke and letting your guard down is what could expose you to vulnerability.
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. Longing for those times might even occur. It's easy for a person in this situation to see the past as something more splendid than it really was. People will overlook how greatly they desired to recover from their addiction.
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.
Acting drunk without drinking: People do not alter their behaviour regardless of no longer drinking. The commitment to sobriety of such individuals is weak thus a relapse can easily occur.
Hanging out with old friends: It can be hazardous if individuals go back to spending time with their former substance-abusing friends. People will easily yield to the peer pressure to relapse if they have a weak recovery.
Going to drinking spots: With a good intentions people who have strongly recovered from addiction are harmless at drinking venues. Going to drinking venues so as to get indirect pleasure from looking at other people drink alcohol is risky. Going to these venues because you are feeling lonely is also a horrible idea. In AA, it is said that sitting in a barber shop for a long time guarantees you a 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.
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. These same steps may not be familiar to everybody but they give a insightful look on how things mostly occur. The relapse process involves these stages:
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. The signs that show that they have stopped progressing are often disregarded. Life is made uncomfortable by lack of progress. To help them cope, the individual will turn to other habits that won't be of much help. Even if they are successful in keeping their problems hidden at this point, these problems will continue to grow under the surface.
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 person will then start to feel a rising emotional disturbance. This is the kind of discomposure a person would experience by sprawling into substance abuse. In sobriety, these feelings may make the person feel vulnerable. Challenges in thinking straight and leading a normal life are as a result of inner chaos.
At this point, other people will also start to notice the emotional turmoil of the person. People may begin to appear angry or agitated. They might start acting unpredictably. In order to maintain the sobriety the person who has reached this level will quit doing the things they need to do.
During this time, the feeling of being overwhelmed and going out of control was also be felt by the individual. They devote a lot of time to thinking about how drugs or alcohol once permitted them to escape life's problems. The motivation to remain sober is presently not significant enough to prevent them from relapsing.
If warning signs of imminent relapse are recognized by someone, they might have to do these steps to prevent it:
Focus on the reasons why they get rid of their addiction as well as their aspirations and expectations in recovery. Now might be a great time to go back and read your recovery diary if you have been writing one. You main priority at this point should be how you're going to stay clean. Until a person is feeling safe and confident about staying sober all other things have to stay in the background. Don't make any big changes or take on new responsibilities at this point in time.
It is absolutely important that the person who has fears about their relapse shares them with an individual who will offer good advice and listen. Talk to your sponsor about what you're facing in case you're part of a 12-step program. It is suggested to those that have a therapist to schedule an urgent meeting. There may be somebody whom people can contact if they have recently left rehab. Avoid being by yourself and find someone that you can talk to. It is suggested if a person is a part of a fellowship that they attend their meetings more often during this dangerous time. Recommendations are also made that they discuss their concerns while sharing during these meetings.
Completely prevent former drinking or drug using friends at this time. Visiting places where alcohol is served during moments of vulnerability is a bad idea for the recovering alcoholics. The reasons why a number of people relapses are because they have committed some mistakes during their recovery. They must retrace their steps to see where this occurred. Conducting this investigation will be highly beneficial, especially with a therapist or an individual who is strongly established within their own recovery. You should also ready stories about recovery that will inspire you at this point. You can abstain by seeing how others did it before you. People can also utilize dependency recovery resources that can be found on the Internet. Look for addiction help lines that are open 24/7.
Making use of the helplines is especially vital in moments where an individual feels helpless.