Support groups and aftercare programs can help you maintain sobriety after reha
Heroin rehab treatment provides addicts with the tools and guidance needed to take back their lives from addiction. During rehab, recovering addicts go through an intensive process that’s designed to lay the foundation for living a drug-free life.
Once a person completes rehab treatment, he or she enters a new stage of the recovery process. Integrating the tools acquired in rehab within their everyday life routines can be challenging when old reminders and memories of drug use confront a person at every turn.
According to the U. S. National Library of Medicine, people who remain engaged in aftercare programs have a considerably better chance of maintaining abstinence after drug rehab. Whether it be regular attendance at 12-Step support groups, ongoing psychotherapy or helping others in recovery find their way, staying engaged in the recovery process provides a person with the daily supports needed to sustain a drug-free lifestyle.
Transitioning from drug rehab to normal, everyday routines can be a jarring experience for recovering heroin addicts. After completing rehab, a person must learn to manage everyday life without the protective layer of a structured treatment environment.
For this reason, addicts must make it a point to keep follow-up appointments with therapists, physicians and counselors at all costs. These appointments not only help a person stay engaged in the treatment process, but also provide a means to work through the challenges and pressures that everyday life brings.
12-Step Support Groups
Most, if not all, heroin rehab programs encourage participation in some form of support group work. Once a person leaves rehab, community-based 12-Step support groups can prove invaluable in helping recovering addicts maintain abstinence.
Feelings of isolation and shame can easily drive someone in recovery back to using again. Regular attendance at 12-Step support group meetings offers a sense of belonging and understanding that family and friends just can’t provide. Twelve-Step support groups can also become a source of support and guidance, especially when the urge to use is strong.
Someone recovering from a heroin addiction must not only maintain abstinence, but also avoid the lifestyle elements that support addiction behaviors. Old friends and old hangouts can quickly become addiction triggers that reignite the urge to use again.
Lifestyle changes work to replace old memories, friends and activities with healthy, productive habits and routines. Developing new interests, helping other people through the recovery process and building a support network can go a long way towards establishing a drug-free lifestyle. Twelve-Step support groups can be a great help in this area.
In effect, recovering from a heroin addiction becomes a healing process for both the body and the mind. People who successfully complete a treatment program have gained valuable experience that can be used to help others make it through recovery.
Sharing experiences are a vital part of the 12-Step support group process. The act of sharing also helps a person remember what it was like to be lost inside a drug addiction. Likewise, mentoring or sponsoring those just entering recovery helps a person reaffirm his or her conviction to remain drug-free.
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