CategoriesSober living

Reducing Relapse Risk Whole Health Library

When clinicians and scientists refer generally to CBT for substance use disorder, it is often Marlatt’s RP model or some related approach to which they are referring. From there, you can begin to think about your potential triggers and your warning signs. A trigger can be anything, including a person, event, or a certain experience that causes you to use substances. Triggers can be stressful situations but they can also be happy things or celebratory occasions.

relapse prevention skills

There are a vast array of relapse prevention tools one can implement into their daily routine to help prevent relapse. There is a common misconception that relapse prevention skills should only be used when someone is having a desire to use. However, relapse prevention skills should be implemented into each recovering person’s daily schedule and routine to prevent or reduce the risk of cravings. Relapse prevention strategies can be taught in individual or group therapy formats. The use of experiential learning techniques can make learning a more active process, enhance self-awareness, decrease defensiveness, and encourage behavior change. Meditation-based interventions can be well suited for experiential learning of self-awareness and positive coping skills. The physical and social environments that recovering people live in play a very strong role in determining whether or not they will be tempted to relapse to drugs and/or alcohol.

Developing Relapse Prevention Coping Skills

When your rate of respiration increases, this can cause more emotions to arise. When you take a moment to breathe deeply, you relax and can focus. You must be aware of your triggers and how they may affect you.

What is the best way to prevent relapse?

  1. Stay Active in Your Recovery Network.
  2. Be Aware of Your Personal Triggers.
  3. Take Good Care of Yourself Physically.
  4. Practice the Art of Letting Go.
  5. Find a Higher Purpose to Live for.

Think about how out of control or sick you felt when you were using. Remember the embarrassing things you may have done or the people you may have hurt. Relapse means going back to using after you’ve been abstinent for some time. It’s an ever-present threat when you’re trying to recover. The National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates that 40 to relapse prevention skills 60 percent of people who were once addicted to drugs will eventually relapse. Preliminary evidence suggests Black and Latino individuals may not derive as much benefit from Relapse Prevention as White individuals. The studies on which this evidence is based, however, were not designed specifically to test this question of differential benefit.

Starting Over: You Can Still Win After a Complete Relapse

With help from the trained staff and medical professionals, you can hold your head high, and be proud to once again live a substance-free life. Some people find that somewhere down the line they struggle with stressors and triggers, and may need just a bit more help with developing coping skills for substance abuse. Others graduate from an outpatient program, even after relapse, and go on to enjoy lifelong sobriety. The clinicians should support the patients attempts at recovery regardless of how many times they tried in the past . Multiple treatment episodes may have a cumulative positive effect, leading to a sustained recovery.