Find Local Treatment Options
Call 800-481-6320 to speak with an alcohol or drug abuse counselor.

5 Tips for Dealing with Addiction After Rehab

The National Institute on Drug Abuse describes addiction as a mental illness that “changes the brain in fundamental ways, disturbing a person’s normal hierarchy of needs and desires and substituting new priorities connected with procuring and using the drug.” Altered thoughts, emotions, and habits are not things that can easily be reversed during the time in rehab and so it is up to the individual to make appropriate lifestyles changes that support their recovery efforts once they leave.

Dealing with addiction after rehab can be confusing, frightening, or even feel as if you are at a crossroads between two real worlds. At one end of the spectrum, you feel more confident, healthier, and motivated to get back to the things you think you have lost while the other side of yourself is questioning, “why bother when there appears to be so many hurdles to overcome?”

Characteristics of Addiction

Addiction is a progressive disease that goes from the occasional use of drugs or alcohol to feel good, socialize, or experiment to the compulsive use of the substance to satisfy physical and psychological dysfunctions such as the adverse symptoms of cravings and withdrawals. The most common characteristics associated with addiction are:

  • Uncontrollable cravings
  • Tolerance
  • Withdrawals
  • Relapse despite willpower and motivated efforts to quit
  • Significant time or energy spent seeking and using the drugs or alcohol
  • Continuing to use despite the negative consequences to self or others including neglect of health, family, work, or other social responsibilities

Addiction Recovery

Addiction rehab can take place in a variety of inpatient or outpatient settings where atmospheres can range from intense supervision to less restrictive with diversified approaches that help the addict detox and heal from the acute effects of the drugs and the consequences of their use. Stabilizing physical and mental health, counseling, guidance, support, and behavioral therapies to help strategically prevent relapse are some of the key components that help addicts recover.

addiction recovery

A big part of addiction recovery is community.

SAMHSA defines recovery from mental and/or substance use disorders as a process of change through which individuals improve their health and wellness, live a self-directed life, and strive to reach their full potential. The four major dimensions that help to support a life in recovery are:

  • Health: Physical, psychological, and emotional well-being
  • Home: Having a stable and safe place to live in an environment that encourages abstinence
  • Purpose: Having purpose and meaning in life, being productive and independent, taking care of family, and participating in normal societal roles
  • Community: Enjoying relationships and social networks that provide hope, support, friendship, and love.

It’s somewhat easier to sustain recovery motivations while in treatment and for that reason, typically, the longer a person remains in treatment, the more successful their recovery outcome will be. Taking what you gain there to the outside and applying it to the areas of your life where triggers to relapse remain high is where the true tests come in and the following are 5 tips for dealing with addiction after rehab.

1.) Remain Vigilant in Your Recovery Efforts

For most people addiction recovery is a life-long event.Just because you feel better and you’ve regained your self-esteem and confidence to refrain from using drugs or alcohol, addiction automatically “rewires” the brain to respond to cues and memories that could trigger a relapse based on the reward values of the addiction behaviors.

According to the Washton Institute, “Recovery can be achieved only when patients change their attitudes and behaviors that led to and/or were associated with drug use.” Leaving the past behind and staying busy and motivated toward an improved lifestyle free from substances is your best bet.

2.) Avoid Triggers

Don’t ever think that you can manage walking that fine line of abstinence without paying attention to the significance of moods, thoughts, emotions, people, places, or things. According to the Center for Studies in Behavioral Neurobiology, “Even when drugs are unavailable for long periods or when users are successful in curbing their drug use for extended periods, individuals remain vulnerable to events that precipitate relapse.”

Whether joyous or distressing, any event can trigger a relapse without consciously thinking about it and that’s why avoiding triggers, using the strategies learned in rehab to deal with these situations, and knowing how to suspend any maladaptive thoughts or stressful triggers until you can get out of the situation is crucial.

3.) Be Realistic

Don’t make unrealistic expectations of yourself. You never know what will happen day to day. You are encouraged to engage in the activities that contribute to motivations and healthy desires which will eventually overcome the dark side of your addiction, but, it can take a while for you to really maximize those benefits. Trying to do too much too quickly, may only lead to disappointment and thinking that you cannot fail, is totally out of your control. Remember, it is o.k. to take risks, but, remain flexible to change those circumstances when mistakes occur.

4.) Join a Support Group

After-care is highly recommended for anyone coming out of rehab and most advocates support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous as life-lines to long-term recovery. These groups are free and open to anyone who needs them with non-judgmental participants who can support each other in their common interests. Knowing that these groups are caring, resourceful, and equipped to care has proven to benefit individuals with a variety of problems.

5.) Have a Plan in Case of Relapse

Drugs like heroin, prescription painkillers, cocaine, and meth are able to produce intense euphoria that leads to the higher rates of relapse. While the cravings may diminish over time in abstinence, few individuals will just “stop using” and for some, the chances of relapse will be inevitable so, don’t panic when it occurs. Relapse should never be viewed as a failure, but, rather an opportunity to learn from your mistakes and get back into recovery with renewed vigor.

More Rehab Centers Resources

Relationship Problems Associated with Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse

Alcohol abuse can cause serious relationship problems!

Negative consequences are a daily occurrence with both alcoholism and with alcohol abuse. People who abuse alcohol get into trouble but the consequences of such trouble can greatly determine whether an individual suffers from alcoholism or from alcohol abuse. Individuals who abuse alcohol still have some control over their drinking and have fewer relationship problems….

Continue reading

10 Reasons you Do Not Want to Go Through Withdrawal Alone

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, it is always good to have a support network while you go through withdrawal. Although every individual is different, there are some common reasons why you do not want to go through withdrawal alone. 1. Everything is Harder on Your Own Although it might not always seem….

Continue reading

How Alcohol Abuse Progresses into Alcoholism

Alcohol abuse can lead into much more dangerous situations!

Alcoholism is not some disease that just appears over night. You don’t just wake up one day and all of a sudden you’re an alcoholic. Alcoholism begins with alcohol abuse and over time as drinking progresses from being a fun thing to do socially and on occasion to being a damaging situation that is out….

Continue reading

Types of Treatment for Prescription Drug Abuse

drug abuse help

Prescription drug abuse is widespread across all cultures, ages, and socioeconomic statuses most often beginning with the legitimate prescription from the family physician or the diversions of those prescriptions to others. Types of treatment for prescription drug abuse vary by facilities and service offerings. According to the NIDA,” Treatment must take into account the type….

Continue reading

Signs of Heroin Addiction You Can’t Ignore

heroin addiction

Heroin is an opioid that they make from the opiate morphine. It is a synthetic form of the pain killer that originally came from the opium poppy in Asia. Heroin is typically a white or brown powder or in the case of Black Tar Heroin, it is a black sticky substance resembling tar. According to….

Continue reading

What Happens in Xanax Rehab?

rehab for xanax

Addiction to Xanax is possible, and those who become unable to control their use of the drug should attend Xanax rehab. In a rehab treatment facility, you will be given medication and attend behavioral therapy in order to recover from your Xanax addiction. What Happens on Your First Day of Rehab? First, after you choose….

Continue reading

Prescription Drug Addiction Amongst Veterans Rising

We need to take a stand for our veterans and stop prescription drug abuse!

Veterans form Vietnam, Desert Storm, Operation Freedom or one of the many other wars or fights that have recently been initiated from our country are finding themselves back at home and unable to cope with the trauma that was felt over seas. As a result, many veterans are turning to prescription medications as a way….

Continue reading

Equine Therapy at Drug Rehab Centers

Equine therapy is known to help people in drug rehab programs.

Equine therapy is a type of therapy that involves individuals working with horses to rebuild their trust and responsibility despite addiction. Horses can help an addict to build a new and trusting relationship while also learning responsibility which is often lost to addiction. Unfortunately, when an addict relies on drugs or alcohol for a prolonged….

Continue reading

Still can't find the help you are looking for?Get Started Now
Accepted Insurances / View the full list
For inquiries call800-481-6320

Accepted Insurances Does My Insurance
Cover This?
I NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOWI NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOW800-481-6320Response time about 1 min | Response rate 100%
Who Answers?

Pin It on Pinterest

Shares