The truth is that triggers of relapse can lead to one or all three of these stages. It is vital to learn how to manage the potential triggers with the help of a relapse prevention treatment program. Sometimes people who are new to sobriety have a newfound pride that they will never use alcohol or drugs ever again, no matter what. Having self-confidence is great, but becoming overconfident can put you in risky situations.

relapse triggers

As good as it feels to belong to a familiar group of people, if they’re still up to the same behavior, it may be best for you to find sober social connections elsewhere. The path to recovery is a journey you must take one step at a time. If you make a mistake along the way, this doesn’t mean that your efforts are doomed or that you should give up hope of meaningful change. Stumbling blocks merely indicate that it’s time to reevaluate your treatment plan and develop strategies that are better suited to your recovery needs.

Drug detox, rehab, and other forms of treatment are not cures for addiction, and substance use disorders cannot be cured. Rather, research shows evidence-based treatment methods can help people manage their addiction more effectively. After transitioning out of rehab and heading back home or into a sober living program, every individual in recovery will encounter several triggers that can cause a relapse. People who struggle with addiction need effective ways of tolerating, managing, and making sense of the negative feelings encountered in daily life. Alcohol, drugs, or addictive behaviors used to provide temporary relief from those feelings, but you can’t rely on them anymore. It’s not uncommon for people who struggle with addictions to relapse at least once during recovery.

Most Common Reasons For Addiction Relapse

If you’re not sure what kind of external addictive triggers you should avoid, keep reading. Individuals with an alcohol or drug addiction often surround themselves with likeminded individuals who also enjoy drinking or drugging. Being around the same people who are engaging in substance use while you are in recovery can trigger a relapse. Part of the recovery process is setting healthy boundaries with friends, family or colleagues who do not respect your sobriety enough to stay sober while they are around you. Ideally you want to reach a point in your recovery where you can enjoy social gatherings where other individuals are drinking alcohol and not be triggered to relapse, but this often takes time and effort.

What are stressful triggers?

Face big changes in your life. Are worried about something. Don't have much or any control over the outcome of a situation. Have responsibilities that you find overwhelming. Don't have enough work, activities or change in your life.

The only solution to stress is a combination of preventive self-care and employing coping skills whenever you start to feel overwhelmed. Let us walk alongside you on the path to sobriety and wellness. When you choose to get treatment at North Georgia Recovery Center, you can rest assured knowing that you will be treated by licensed therapists in our state-of-the-art facilities.

Uncomfortable Emotions

In active addiction, when you were tired you used alcohol or drugs. Nobody wants to experience uncomfortable emotions, but they are a natural and normal part of the human experience. What is not healthy is avoiding such emotions, or even worse, using alcohol or drugs to cover them up and sweep them under the rug.

What are the top 3 factors that contribute to relapse?

  • The severity and consequences of addiction;
  • Co-occurring mental or medical conditions; and.
  • The individuals coping skills, motivation, and support system. [1]

People often say that getting sober is much easier than staying sober, which is very true. With how addiction affects the brain, it’s essential to learn how to manage triggers, which lead to cravings. To overcome your addiction for good, you need to be aware of the most common relapse triggers. Going to a drug and alcohol addiction therapy program allows you to not only identify these triggers but learn how to cope with them as well. Sometimes individuals who are new to sobriety experience a pink cloud, or have notions that they will never use alcohol or drugs ever again no matter what. They have such bad memories of their substance use, and are enjoying their recovery journey.

Preparing for Unexpected Relapse Triggers with Wellness

Granted these feelings are positive, they can easily trigger relapses. For example, most celebrations involve substance use among-st friends and family. Therefore, if you’re in a drug and alcohol recovery stage, this environment can inspire you to feel celebratory and want to participate. When you hear the word relapse, you probably think of someone addicted to drugs or alcohol. And while it can be a relevant term for people with those issues, relapse is also a common problem for individuals living with mental health conditions. Keep reading for an explanation of the most common relapse triggers and what to do after a relapse.

  • If a person isn’t equipped with effective coping skills or neglects to use them to their full potential, the likelihood of acting on their urges increases.
  • Being in an environment where there is drug use might be setting yourself up to fail.
  • By familiarizing yourself with the warning signs of a relapse, you have a better chance at avoiding one.
  • It’s also great to find a hobby, passion, or a safe activity you enjoy that keeps you focused and happy.
  • Individuals with an alcohol or drug addiction will experience varying degrees of withdrawal symptoms when they stop using their substance of choice.

Physical relapses are one of the most challenging stages of relapse to overcome. In many cases, users cave to drug use during a window of opportunity and falsely believe it will cause no harm. When people in recovery succumb to triggers, their brains create reasons to use substances despite knowing that they must remain abstinent. This ongoing fight increases their vulnerability to cravings, which may result in a potential relapse.

Receive the Red Oak Experience Today!

If someone forgets that addiction is a chronic condition, they may be tempted to have “just one” drink, injection, hit or bump with the expectation that it won’t be a big deal. This leads to riskier situations and eventually a full relapse. To keep emotions from triggering a relapse, people in recovery need to learn coping skills that can be discovered through therapy. A trigger is an emotional, environmental or social situation that drags up memories of drug or alcohol use in the past. These memories can stir up strong emotions that lead to the impulse to use a substance again. Triggers do not necessarily lead to relapse, but they do make it harder to resist the sudden cravings they produce.

relapse triggers

A relapse trigger does not always come from negative or dangerous circumstances. Celebratory times, such as parties or holidays, can come with a minefield of temptations. It is extremely common to serve alcohol at celebrations in the US.

There’s nothing rude about taking care of yourself and avoiding triggers that could lead to a relapse. You don’t even have to talk to your support people in person. Send them a text message or Facetime them until the urge to relapse passes. Technology gives us the tools to stay connected to our support groups even if they’re not in the same time zone.

One should not surround themselves intentionally with other people who are using alcohol or drugs unless they have a stable foundation in their own recovery. It is also helpful to have a plan in place when surrounding oneself with people who are using alcohol or drugs, and bring a sober support and accountability partner with them when possible. She is no stranger to mental health and substance abuse issues in her family, and she herself also struggled with addiction and moved to California to commit herself to treatment. After much success in the corporate world, Rebecca started a sober living home as a “passion project” to provide women with a safe place as they re-enter the world as sober members of society. She noticed that there weren’t many aftercare programs dedicated to women’s sobriety or supporting them with the various co-occurring disorders that pop up once women are free from drugs and alcohol.

Remove all alcohol, drugs, and related paraphernalia from your home. Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy. But, recovery is not just about “quitting” and “abstaining” as much as it’s about building a new life in which it is easier—and more desirable—not to use. When this happens, a good thing to do is call a supportive friend and let them know that you are thinking about using. This will help you not to feel so alone and you can talk through the issue.

relapse triggers

Difficulty in a relationship, a work environment that doesn’t suit you, traffic, social media, or even worrying about the future can lead to stress and the potential for relapse. Your recovery support system can help you develop tactics to manage triggers, making them less as you grow stronger in your recovery. Research shows that when eco sober house cost treating addictions to opioids , medication should be the first line of treatment, usually combined with some form of behavioral therapy or counseling. Medications are also available to help treat addiction to alcohol and nicotine. You might be worried that this distraction tactic might come across as rude if you’re out in public.

When expressing yourself, take care to focus on your love for them, and remind them that you are concerned only because you care. Try not to pass judgment or let your emotions get the best of you. If you begin to feel overwhelmed, whether by frustration or sadness or any other strong emotion, it is best to take a break and wait until you’re calm again before continuing this conversation.

Realize that those negative feelings you’re having don’t have to be a sign of an impending setback. If you don’t prepare for these situations ahead of time, you are vulnerable to relapse. Try brainstorming ideas or work with your counselor or therapist eco sober house rating to come up with a plan. With the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of people underwent sudden financial hardships. And when you’re worried about how you’ll pay your bills or feed your family, that stress can build up and drastically worsen your mental state.

Those in recovery often have a hard time finding new ways to have fun, and it may cause them to glamorize or ruminate on their past substance abuse. Recovery is hard work and drug use feels easy, and this can make people feel like their efforts haven’t been worth it. Therapy can help people overcome the cognitive challenge of acknowledging the difficulty of recovery but realizing that sustaining an addiction is far harder. It’s not just negative events that can result in addiction relapse triggers.