Without the right tools, resources, and support, fear of relapse can be overwhelming. In fact, fear of relapse can be so strong and pervasive that many people use it as an excuse to avoid recovery. If you’ve been living with a drug or alcohol addiction and want to get help, you may be worried about how you’ll stay clean and sober once you get that way.
The good news is that there are countless, effective tools that people can use to maintain their sobriety long-term. If you’ve tried to quit using substances on your own before, any failure to keep your recovery on track is likely due to the absence of these tools. During professional treatment, people learn many effective strategies for successfully fighting off temptations and cravings. They also receive counseling and other services that help them learn more about the underlying causes of their addictions.
Before treatment, most people assume that their inability to quit abusing drugs or alcohol stems from a lack of willpower. In reality, substance use disorder often has a number of complex causes. These can include:
- Past traumas
- Unresolved guilt or grief
- Secondary mental health issues that have yet to be diagnosed or treated
- Low self-esteem or feelings of worthlessness
When addiction is addressed at its source, people tend to have the best chance at getting well and staying that way. Thus, not only can addiction treatment help you get sober, it can also keep you sober.
Strategies for Ensuring Long-Term Success in Recovery
Detox is only the first step in addiction treatment. After the body has been cleaned of toxins and loses its physical reliance upon substances, addiction counselors begin addressing the psychological causes of addiction and its psychological effects. If you grew up in a home where you were constantly belittled or made to feel inferior, you may have started using drugs as a way to gain acceptance. During your treatment, you’ll learn how to value and appreciate yourself.
Activities that build your confidence and reveal your self-worth will make you more prone to making life-affirming decisions that actually support and promote your own well-being. If you’ve suffered a loss that you’ve long been unable to process, drug or alcohol use could stem from a desire to mute your grief. In cases such as this, addiction treatment places a strong focus on processing grief and moving beyond it so that people can begin viewing life in a positive and healthy way.
Addressing Secondary Mental Health Disorders
For many people living with substance use disorder, addiction is the direct result of a secondary mental health issue. For these individuals, substance abuse is an effort to self-medicate for problems that haven’t been properly diagnosed and treated. With professional treatment for chronic depression or anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, or other ailments, patients can learn how to manage their mental health in positive and healthy ways. They’re often encouraged to practice good nutrition and good general self-care. They may even use medication to manage problems that have physiological causes. When comorbidities or co-occurring disorders are treated, staying sober becomes infinitely easier.
The Many Benefits of Sobriety Are an Excellent Source of Motivation
Irrespective of why you started using drugs or alcohol to alter your mental and emotional state, the benefits of sobriety will eventually become a strong source of motivation. Although detoxing is difficult, as people gradually adapt to their new and healthier way of functioning, they quickly come to appreciate the positive changes that sobriety invariably brings including:
- Mood stability
- Greater self-control
- An increased ability to appreciate and engage with those around them
Being sober provides freedom. There is no need to constantly worry about being high or how you will get high. The fear of impending legal, financial, professional, or personal problems gradually abates, and people in recovery also have the ability to start proactively resolving problems from their pasts. As a person’s mind clears in treatment, the drawbacks of getting high and being high become evermore clear.
Relapse Prevention and Other Forms of Ongoing Support
Addiction treatment acknowledges that temptations, triggers, cravings, and other addiction-related challenges can present at any time during or after treatment. As such, rehab patients spend considerable amounts of time learning healthy coping strategies. They’re also taught how to avoid environments, relationships, and circumstances that make them more vulnerable to these challenges.
Before exiting programs, all patients are additionally encouraged to establish plans for ongoing recovery support. These can include relapse prevention programs, sober living housing, local support groups, and even sobriety mentors and coaches among other things. If you’re ready to experience the joys of living a sober life and want assistance in finding the best tools for supporting lifelong sobriety, we can help. Call us today at (833) 922-2653.