Even after you’ve worked hard to overcome an addiction, relapse is still a risk. In fact, relapse impacts more than half of all people who have achieved sobriety after a substance abuse disorder. Often, there are triggers that can signal a potential relapse. By discovering your own relapse triggers, you’ll be better prepared to prevent relapse in the future.
Stress is something that is present in all of our lives. While stress is normal and even healthy in the right amount, many people who have struggled with addiction in the past don’t have healthy coping mechanisms. That’s because for many, drugs or alcohol were the primary means of stress relief.
This is why it’s so important to learn how to manage stress in new and healthy ways. Sometimes, you can manage stress by hitting the gym or going for a walk outside. Other times, indulging in some pampering or enjoying a favorite hobby can be a great outlet for stress. Ultimately, it’s up to each individual to find a way to manage and relieve stress that doesn’t involve substance abuse.
Recognizing the Symptoms of HALT
Some of the most common relapse triggers can be summed up with one acronym: HALT. This acronym stands for hungry, angry, lonely and tired. In countless cases, one or more of these strong feelings is what causes a relapse.
Physical cravings for food can start to feel like cravings for drugs or alcohol. Sometimes, eating a quick snack can reduce the cravings in a matter of minutes. Overwhelming emotions like being tired, lonely or angry can also spark cravings and lead to a relapse. Monitoring your emotions can help avoid these triggers and prevent a relapse.
Establishing a Daily Routine
In recovery, experts often encourage clients to establish a daily routine. Having a schedule is an effective way of eliminating many of the choices people make in daily life. With fewer variables and choices to make, it’s easier to stay on track.
If you have 1,000 choices to make each day, that means you’ll nearly use up your willpower by the end of the day (did you know that willpower is actually a finite resource?). If you only need to make 100 choices in a day, then you’ll find it easier to turn down cravings on a regular basis.
In the short term, rehab and addiction treatment is a smart choice. Over time, however, most people can benefit from finding a source of ongoing support. This can be in the form of a support group or even friends and family.
Discover Your Relapse Triggers in Rehab
At Crestview Recovery, clients will have the chance to work on relapse prevention through a wide range of therapies. Some of the most effective therapies and treatments may include:
- Life skills rehab
- Extended care programs
- Mindfulness meditation therapy
- Nutritional support
- Exercise therapy
Relapse triggers are highly personal, so each client needs to discover their own. At Crestview Recovery in Portland, Oregon, you can find and target your triggers to prevent relapse. Fight for your sobriety by calling 866.262.0531.