6 Ways to Guard Against Relapse When Transitioning Back to Living Alone

Deep within an addict’s brain, cocaine runs interference among neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers that nerves use to communicate with each other. This drug also blocks norepinephrine, serotonin, dopamine and numerous other transmitters from being properly absorbed, which results in a chemical buildup between nerves; as a result, users experience euphoria or a high. Because the high typically lasts only a short amount of time, users constantly find themselves chasing the initial high, so before long they become addicted to cocaine.

If an addict succeeds in cocaine addiction treatment, then she has accomplished a tremendous goal. While in treatment, she had drug-free environments, made relapse-prevention plans and finalized aftercare plans. Although completing treatment is a tremendous task, it is just the beginning of one’s recovery, so now all the tools and skills a recovering addict learns will be tested.

Ways to Avoid Relapse Once Treatment Is Completed

Successfully completing treatment and reentering society can be a joyous, rewarding and terrifying process for recovering addicts. While in treatment, people received every tool they needed to succeed in recovery, but after treatment ends they must take what they learned and integrate it into their daily lives. Although you cannot avoid every situation that could spark a relapse, the following steps or techniques can reduce the risk of drug abuse:

  • Avoid tempting situations and/or environments
  • Surround yourself with support healthy individuals
  • Create a healthy schedule
  • Do not get content
  • Do not view relapse as a failure
  • Celebrate successes

Some recovering addicts may want to prove both to themselves and to others that they can be around cocaine and avoid using it, but this situation can place them at a huge risk for relapse. While they may find that, at one particular moment, they can avoid temptation, they might not be able to do so on other occasions, especially early in their recoveries. If at all possible, try to steer clear of any situation that may place the recovering addict’s sobriety in jeopardy. These situations can be both physical and emotional, so avoid going to places where it is known that substance abuse occurs or where you will remember your past drug use. Also, try avoiding people and/or situations that could spark an emotional relapse trigger.

Depending on the duration of one’s addiction, her social circle may have only consisted of other drug-using friends with the supportive loved ones being casted away. Now that treatment is over, it is important for the recovering addict to surround herself with positive individuals who are drug free and support recovery. Although it can be difficult, letting go of unhealthy relationships and focusing on deepening healthy ones can further recovery. You can even change your phone number, delete phone numbers of drug-using friends from your phone, block and/or delete them from social networking sites and invest in new, healthy support networks.

Before leaving the treatment facility, recovering addicts are often encouraged to create daily schedules. This schedule should include times for outpatient treatment and meetings, other necessary activities (such as one’s work or family time), daily living activities and then personal or free time. By creating a schedule, recovering addicts are able to maintain a healthy yet structured way of living.

Many recovering addicts are highly motivated after they complete inpatient treatment, which then carries into aftercare. During this time, they also develop their own social networks and make tremendous strides in their recovery. However, as time progresses, their motivation may dwindle, so, the further into recovery they go, the less some recovering addicts think they need to maintain their recovery efforts. This fact does not mean people need to spend the rest of their lives in treatment, but it does mean that that they stick with it once they find what supports their recoveries.

Relapses are common for recovering addicts, especially during the early stages of recovery. If this problem occurs, then do not view it as the ultimate failure. If you remember that you went through this before and were able to stay clean, then you can do it again. Learn from your mistakes and process the reasons the relapse occurred, and then avoid those problems in the future. Set milestones and celebrate when you accomplish them. Maybe you have a dream to go on a vacation, shopping spree or a day to yourself. Celebrate these successes with those dreams to feel encouraged and to stay on track with healthy choices. Even years down the road, you can stay clean if you follow this advice.

Cocaine Addiction Treatment

If you or someone you know recently completed cocaine addiction treatment and has trouble transitioning into aftercare, then please call our toll-free helpline now. Our admissions coordinators are available 24 hours a day to answer your questions and to help you find the best options for support. All recovering addicts could use a little help now and then, so call us today for a boost!

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