8 Keys to Healthy Living: Preventing Relapse for Recovering Addicts

8 Keys to Healthy Living: Preventing Relapse for Recovering Addicts

Statistics show that the relapse rate for substance abuse is around 40-60%. With such a glaring rate, the fear of relapsing in former addicts is completely valid. 

However, with the right prevention strategies, you can avoid spiraling back to toxic habits. This guide will help you through everything you must practice and ensure a relapse-free life!

  1. Practice mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness meditation helps you become self-aware. Self-awareness is essential to cope with triggers that lead to relapse.

This meditation type is known to be one of the most effective relapse prevention programs. Research shows that recovered addicts who practice mindfulness meditation stay clean and sober for much longer.

Reportedly, they also experience less frequent cravings. Whenever they had a craving, they accepted it as a normal part of healing and didn’t fight it. They could accept and overcome these phases without losing self-control solely because of the meditation.

  1. Stay away from triggers

There are two types of triggers:

  • Internal triggers, including stress, anger, irritability, anxiety, and low self-esteem
  • External triggers like people, things, and places connected with addiction

Identify your triggers, try to avoid the external ones, and embrace coping strategies for the internal ones.

  1. Seek expert assistance

The most effective and surefire relapse prevention method is to sign up for a dependable rehab program like the Malibu substance abuse treatment.

They house the best therapists, addiction specialists, and counselors and provide one-on-one care with personalized treatment. They help you identify your triggers, cope with them, and address all underlying issues.

They also have a wide range of facilities for relaxation and treatment and holistic treatment approaches. If necessary, they also arrange for group therapy sessions and programs with your family.

  1. Join support groups

Check whether there are any addiction support groups around you. If not, you can also look up an online support group.

All recovered and recovering addicts meet each other and share their struggles. The clean, sober people advise the other group about strategies to overcome addiction and deal with cravings and triggers.

Moreover, it reduces feelings of loneliness and the chances of self-isolation, which triggers relapse.

  1. Ground yourself

If you often experience stress and anxiety (two extreme triggers), deal with them with the 5-4-3-2-1 grounding technique.

In this, you’re made to focus on your five senses. Meanwhile, you overcome your desire for substance abuse, anxiety, or unhealthy patterns like negative self-talk,

Here’s how to do it:

  • Observe five things you can see around you.
  • Notice four objects you can touch around you.
  • Acknowledge three objects you can hear right now.
  • Recognize two things you can smell right now.
  • Identify one thing you can taste around you.
  • After that, take a long breath.

This lets you gain mindfulness and self-awareness, helping you complete your daily routine and feel in control of life and less overwhelmed.

  1. Take deep breaths

Deep rhythmic breathing emits neurotransmitters in your brain. It triggers the positive feeling chemicals which elevates your mood, lightens emotions, reduces pain, helps you relax, and makes you happy.

It also boosts oxygen flow in the blood and releases toxins with every exhale. Thus, you consider substance abuse lesser.

  1. Remember the negatives

Whenever your urges return, you mostly crave the positive feelings associated with substance abuse.

A great option to numb these urges is to remember what happens until the very end if you consume substances. Imagine the effects on your body if you consume it and when you don’t. This can help you snap back to reality and avoid relapsing.

  1. Practice self-care

Another important relapse prevention strategy is to take great care of yourself during this phase. Here are a few must-dos:

  1. Exercise regularly for 10-20 minutes, even if it’s just walking. It releases mood-elevating chemicals like endorphins, reduces stress and anxiety, distracts you from cravings, and improves energy levels.
  2. Consume a balanced, wholesome diet that energizes your body. Avoid junk and sugary food, as they often make you crave substances.
  3. Lack of or poor sleep makes you anxious. Moreover, when tired, you are highly likely to make poor choices, including substance abuse. So, sleep at least 8 hours and follow a consistent sleep routine. Stretch your body slightly before bed to relax.

Conclusion

Other than following these strategies, remember to have faith in yourself. Cut off negative people affect you. Surround yourself with supportive loved ones. Stay committed, and you’ll reach your goals soon. You’ve got this!

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