Dealing With Addiction Triggers? Try These Coping Skills

Again, life after rehab is very difficult and includes new complications. These unexpected issues can lead to feelings of resentment towards the recovery process—which can lead individuals to start using again. There is a lot of emphasis placed on consistency and routine in addiction recovery programs.

types of relapse triggers

In fact, despite FDA-approved treatments for nicotine, alcohol, and opioid addiction, more than two-thirds of individuals will relapse after initiating treatment. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers. Many people with eating disorders consume food out of boredom, and boredom can allow your mind to drift to “what if” situations involving alcohol or whatever your drug of choice is. Beware of the danger of boredom, and work with your counselor or another trusted friend to help you build a plan for coping with boredom in healthy ways.

The 5 Most Common Addiction Triggers

We say relapse is a process not an event, but cravings are not something that you can always predict or guard against. You can get a craving whilst watching TV or while you are trying to work or go to sleep. All you know is that your body is telling you how much better you’d feel if only you took a drink, smoked a joint or took that drug. Your biological body clock is a trigger to undertake any routine behaviour. All living creatures have an internal timing system that tells us what we should be doing at any given time to satisfy our needs. So whether it’s a lunch time drink, evening joint, bedtime pill, weekend cocaine, daily or sometimes hourly fix, you are programmed to expect it. While many triggers can be negative experiences, it is important to note that positive events can trigger relapsing as well.

Brainstorm lists of movies to watch, music to listen to, books to read, people to call, home improvement projects to tackle, and new hobbies you’d like to try. Keep this list handy so you’re never left wondering how to fill your free time.

How To Manage Triggers In Recovery

Counselors may select from a menu of services that meet the specific medical, mental, social, occupational, family, and legal needs of their patients to help in their recovery. For people with addictions to drugs like stimulants or cannabis, no medications are currently available to assist in treatment, so treatment consists of behavioral therapies. Treatment should be tailored to address each patient’s drug use patterns and drug-related medical, mental, and social problems. Hawaii Island Recovery, the Big Island’s premiere residential substance abuse rehabilitation facility for adults, offers a comprehensive treatment program in a tranquil and healing environment. Understanding your loved one’s particular triggers empowers you to help them avoid these triggers when it’s possible in order to lower the risk of relapse. And for those triggers that are unavoidable, you can help them cope more effectively and lower their risk for relapse more than they might be able to do on their own. When you feel a craving coming on, don’t try to cover up the feeling; accept it, and let it pass.

types of relapse triggers

You might also find it helpful to surround yourself with positive people who are not using substances themselves because they will understand you easier without triggering a desire in you to do the same. You could try some new hobbies or meet up with friends so that your daily routine is kept exciting and doesn’t drag on too long, which can cause problems. Avoid triggers such as talking to others about drugs and alcohol or going shopping at stores where liquor is displayed prominently. For example, people may have been hurt, and relationships may have been lost.

What Are Common Relapse Triggers?

As a group facilitator, she works collaboratively with her clients to help them focus on the action they will need to take to recognize the vision they will have for themselves. Tracy Dunn is a National Interventionist and Addiction Coach who has received training at the Crossroads Recovery Coaching Academy of Seattle Washington and The Addiction Academy in Miami Florida. As the daughter of Roger Dunn of the Roger Dunn Golf Stores , Tracy knows all too well the dramatic impact that fame and addiction can have on the family system.

  • Both dedication toward the life you want to experience sober, and the emotional and psychological wellbeing that holds it together.
  • One important study examined theeffect of visual triggersin people who were former users of cocaine.
  • Realize that you are going to encounter triggers and figure out how to deal with them in advance.

Find a good doctor for regular checkups and healthy-habit recommendations. Even those not particularly prone to negative emotions have limits on how much overall stress they can take. Consider if you need to make any temporary or permanent lifestyle/priority changes to reduce tension and overwhelm, especially in areas that were contributing factors to the original addiction. When people get enough sleep,eat balanced meals, and are physically active, they are more psychologically stable and ready to take on what the world may throw at them each day.

Share Your List Of Triggers With Someone Close

Though the severity of relapses varies widely, they are always a result of both emotional and mental relapse working together unchecked. If, for whatever reason, you’re unable to emotionally regulate and find a way to stave off negative thoughts and fantasies of drug and alcohol abuse, physical relapse is a very real risk. In a general sense, to relapse means to experience a period of regression after temporary improvement. The term is often used to describe diseases — addiction included. Because drug and alcohol addiction is a chronic brain disease, every recovery carries the risk of relapse.

When recovering individuals do not develop healthy life skills, the consequence is that they also may be unhappy in life, but that can lead to relapse. A basic fear of recovery is that the individual is not capable of recovery. The belief is that recovery requires some special strength or willpower that the individual does not possess. Past relapses are taken as proof that the individual does not have what it takes to recover . Cognitive therapy helps clients see that recovery is based on coping skills and not willpower. In bargaining, individuals start to think of scenarios in which it would be acceptable to use.

  • Generally, the individual will stop attending group therapies and avoid any type of accountability.
  • The HALT acronym helps those in recovery keep an eye on some of the most basic human needs that can lead to or intensify triggers if not fulfilled.
  • The holidays also represent a break in routine that can influence a person’s desire to use a substance.
  • They often contribute toward better relationships in the long run.
  • In order to keep your mind off the emotions you are ignoring, you may find yourself giving in to compulsive behaviors now and again.

Obstacles in recovery are often caused by insufficient coping skills or an inability to plan effectively. These issues can be fixed, and people should learn to challenge their outlook by giving equal attention to past successes.

Relapse Prevention Treatment At Discovery Institute

The cognitive challenge is to acknowledge that recovery is sometimes hard work but addiction is even harder. If addiction were so easy, people wouldn’t want to quit and wouldn’t have to quit. Occasional, brief thoughts of using are normal in early recovery and are different from mental relapse.

However, people without substance abuse issues can take a step back during these difficult times and assess their situation, individuals in recovery may have trouble doing this. It is in these moments when you are most vulnerable and may think about turning to drugs or alcohol for comfort.

Addiction recovery is challenging for many reasons, one of which is the potential for relapse. But thinking in these terms lays the groundwork for turning the smallest mistake into a recipe for relapse. To try to prevent the perfectionism relapse, strive to set realistic goals.

It sounds silly but sometimes that little bit of assurance — even if it’s coming from your own lips — can be enough to keep the trigger from causing problems. Currently working towards a degree in Business Administration along with being a loving mother to her husband, and two sons. In her free time, Kelli is active in the recovery community and lends her support to nonprofit organizations to help those in underserved communities.

Educating clients in these few rules can help them focus on what is important. No stranger to mental health and substance abuse issues in her family, she herself also struggled with addiction and moved to California to commit herself to treatment. After much success in the corporate world, she started a sober-living as a “passion project” to provide women 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. So in 2016 she partnered with Amy to create a safe, therapy-focused place where women can heal from their addictions, trauma, and other issues while growing into who they were always meant to be. Becca is passionate about helping women realize their worth and supporting/helping them navigate the next steps of their lives, all while helping them feel secure on their road to long-term recovery.

For instance, if you’re an alcoholic and a group of drinking buddies ask you to go out, or you see people from work going to happy hour, it might help to have a specific response ready. Unfortunately, happy times can lead to relapse, especially when they involvepartiesand include temptations like alcohol. While you can avoid some celebratory events, you probably cannot avoid all of them, and some will inevitably include alcohol or other temptations. Perhaps your partner or friend at these events can have your back and help you resist if you are inadvertently offered something that could trigger a relapse. Depending on a trusted friend can get you through a tempting situation unscathed. Alone, each of those can cause strain and make days a little more difficult. Together, however, the challenges can feel insurmountable if you don’t have the coping skills or support network to process them.

An Example Of A Very Brief Relapse Prevention Action Plan:

You can prevent this by keeping yourself in check and staying humble through the recovery process. Managing your relapse triggers is a process that takes time and a skill that you will develop and strengthen with practice.

Meaning, you can purposefully avoid certain places, cut off relationships with certain people, and take other intentional actions to limit your exposure to triggers. Co-occurring mental illnessesare common in people with substance abuse disorders. In fact, substance abuse may begin as an attempt at self-medication to cope with undiagnosed depression, anxiety, or another mental illness.

Get Help With Relapse Prevention

They just have to reset, practice healthy eating and get their blood sugar under control with the help of their doctor. The only solution to stress is a combination of preventive self-care and employing coping skills whenever you start to feel overwhelmed. Amy moved to California from Florida in 2011 to begin her journey into a life of rovery. Amy started to gain her spirit back while helping others and that’s when she found her life’s purpose.

Common Addiction Relapse Triggers And Warning Signs

Sometimes, individuals in recovery set extremely high standards for themselves. Then when unable to maintain unreasonable expectations, develop a sense of self-defeating internal dialogue. These negative thoughts and feelings can be dangerous emotional triggers that should not go ignored. This therapeutic approach is often used when withdrawal symptoms are persistent and interfere with the focus on addiction treatment. Although MAT is a very useful program to incorporate into treatment, it is not intended to be utilized forever. Instead, a medication that reduces cravings or causes negative reactions to substances is used as a teaching experience.

The first, and often the best way to handle encountering an addiction trigger, is to leave or get away. By putting distance between yourself and whatever is types of relapse triggers prompting a craving, you diminish the severity of the immediate threat. For example, if the beer is not in front of you, you cannot reach out and grab it.

Today, she is the founder of Reiki Collective, an alternative healing service provider bridging the gap between energy medicine and western healthcare systems. Jona is committed to providing compassionate care that is safe for clients and for her team so she developed a rigorous internship modeled after that of other clinical professions. Healers receive ongoing learning centered around seeing others in their deepest dignity as well as licensed support for managing triggers that arise during sessions. Reiki Collective healers use the Samadhi for Peace Healing Method and are the only energy healers trained specifically to work with clients in treatment for mental health challenges and co-occurring disorders. Poor self-care sends messages to your brain that you don’t care about your wellbeing and can trigger a relapse. You need to engage in self-care like showering, exercise, meditating, and having a proper sleep regimen to support your mental wellness in recovery and improve life quality. Over the years, additional research has confirmed that the steps described in theGorski and Miller study are “reliableand valid” predictors that commonly cause many of us in recovery to relapse.

Leave your comment Required fields are marked *