For a long time, almost longer than you can remember, you were addicted to drugs. You used to think you could stop whenever you wanted, but you soon realized that wasn’t true. The drug had a hold on you and it wasn’t letting go. What’s worse, you didn’t want it to let go.
However, since your life was no longer your own, you spiraled out of control. You cut off loved ones, abandoned hobbies, let your professional life suffer. The drug was what was most important in every facet of your life.
You knew you couldn’t keep living this way, so you got help. You successfully completed drug addiction treatment at a rehab facility. You’re sober and you intend to stay that way. However, you have to admit, you’re nervous about the chance of relapsing. You don’t want to lose control to the drug again, and you don’t want to find yourself back in rehab.
What can you do? Check out these five tips that can hopefully help you avoid a relapse.
- Change your lifestyle — When you were addicted to drugs, you probably surrounded yourself with people who could get you drugs. They also likely did drugs themselves. Although it seems obvious, you may need a gentle reminder that you shouldn’t go back to these people. Stop visiting the streets and locations where you used to buy and do drugs. By disassociating with bad crowds like these, you can avoid the substance you were addicted to in the first place. That alone lowers your chance of relapsing.
- 2. Know the signs — Relapsing doesn’t just happen all at once. First, it starts with emotional stress. This emotional stress gives way to mental stress. That leads to physical stress. When you combine all that at once, it’s likely you could slip back into using. With drugs, which are often highly addictive, using just once could get you hooked all over again.
- Take care of yourself — That’s why it’s all the more important to take care of yourself. While you can never avoid all stress, if you’re healthy, you can deal with pressure a lot better. Eat well. Sleep at least seven or eight hours every night. Engage in physical fitness. Attend meetings if they’re required of you. Be social with others, especially your supporters.
- Always remember what you learned — When you’re under great stress, recall what your therapists, psychologists, and other health professionals taught you at rehab. The tools and coping skills they instilled in you were meant for moments when you doubt yourself and you’re not sure what to do. Heed their words.
- Know you’re never alone — Of course, if you need a refresher, it’s okay to reach out to your therapist or someone else at the rehab facility. They want to see you living a happy, successful, sober life. Some rehab facilities understand that that entails more than just a few weeks of treatment, but that the patient needs check-ins once they’re back home, too. Don’t ever be afraid to pick up the phone when you need help.
Have you recently relapsed? Are you afraid you’re going to? Have the cravings for the drug become stronger than you can deal with? Call to get help.