Overcoming addiction is no easy task, and for many families, it feels like a seemingly endless cycle of rehab, recovery, relapse, and repeat. If this sound like you or someone you care about, you are not alone. Just like the movie Groundhog Day, addiction can feel like you are stuck to relive the same day over and over again. But like Phil Connors discovered, there is a way to break this cycle.
How to Break the Cycle of Addiction & Stop Relapsing
The cycle of addiction and relapse is a common problem for many people struggling with substance use. It is estimated that anywhere from 40 to 60% of people will relapse.1 Although this can make lifelong recovery seem out of reach, breaking the cycle of addiction is possible.
Learn from Relapse
Although it can leave you feeling defeated, relapsing can be a good learning experience. If you relapse, take the time to analyze how you got to this point. What behaviors may have led to your relapse? What triggers got to you? What could you have done differently? When you can honestly answer these questions, you will be able to implement what you learned next time and be a lot closer to breaking the cycle of relapse for good.
Keep a Routine
Once you leave the rigid and strict schedule of residential treatment, it is easy to get complacent and stray from the routine you started to develop. While this may seem harmless at first, you may quickly find yourself sliding back into bad habits and then ultimately relapsing. One of the keys to breaking the relapse cycle is keeping your routine. This routine helps you develop lifelong healthy habits that keep you on track in recovery.
Although you may have burned some bridges while in active addiction, lifelong recovery is only achievable when you have support. Find friends or family that will stay by your side or go to family therapy to try to help mend these relationships. Lean on other people in recovery or your sponsor when you are struggling. When you have support, you not only have others to depend on, but you are also more likely to believe in yourself.
Continue Moving Forward
Recovery is a journey that doesn’t end when your treatment program does. Part of breaking the cycle of drug addiction is continuing to push yourself to move forward after rehab. Strive for self-improvement and set recovery goals. Practice self-care and work on improving your mental health. When you are able to start focusing on building a future in recovery, you can stop making past mistakes.
Stay in Treatment
Some people relapse because they go from rehab right back to their regular life. This quick transition can leave people feeling overwhelmed and ill-equipped to handle addiction triggers on their own. Instead, think of recovery as a lifelong journey that requires constant support and guidance. Outpatient options like a partial hospitalization program or even online addiction treatment can provide this care as you learn how to live in recovery and approach relapse triggers as they arise.
Seek Help Immediately
Experiencing drug cravings is nothing to be ashamed of. If you are faced with addiction triggers and feeling tempted, you do not need to go through this alone. Whether you call a friend, family member, or sponsor, make sure you reach out to someone for help. If you always try to handle it on your own, you may find yourself in an overwhelming situation and are much more likely to fall back into the cycle of chronic relapse. If you been through it all before, breaking the cycle of addiction may seem out of reach, but it is possible. At Vertava Health, we believe that the best is yet to come, but sometimes you just need a little help getting there. Reach out to us today to learn more about how we may be able to help.