If someone you care about is struggling with addiction to drugs or alcohol, an addiction treatment center that teaches relapse prevention techniques may give them the tools to cope with common recurrence triggers long after treatment is over.
At The Raleigh House, we take addiction recurrence prevention seriously. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 40 to 60 percent of people in addiction recovery will relapse. We know what the statistics say, and we are committed to giving our clients the best possible chance to beat the odds. If your loved one is in addiction recovery, it’s beneficial to know the most common reasons people resume substance use, so you can help your loved one avoid them.
6 Common Causes for Substance Abuse Relapse
1. Traumatic Life Events
Your loved one’s time in addiction treatment should have taught them healthy coping skills to manage past trauma and life’s future ups and downs. Like any new skill, though, effectively managing trauma takes time. If they are continuing to struggle with trauma they’ve experienced or are facing a new challenging event, they may be more likely to resume drinking or using drugs.
2. Social Pressures
Exposure to social situations where alcohol and drugs are present can trigger a substance use recurrence. This is especially true if your loved one returns to the same people and places that encouraged their addiction in the first place. Addiction treatment taught them about the importance of healthy connections and routines to avoid relapse. However, if they slip back into their old environment and friends, it could be a warning sign that recurring substance use is imminent.
3. Not Seeking Additional Help
Even in recovery, a need for a support system continues. Even if your loved one is feeling good and staying healthy, there are times that can be challenging and spark old addiction cravings. If they grow complacent in their recovery plan, they may not be able to fight their recurrence triggers if they lose a job unexpectedly or struggle in a relationship.
As your loved one progresses through recovery, encourage them to continue going to support meetings on a weekly basis. The Raleigh House also offers outpatient treatment, if they require additional support to remain sober.
4. Unaddressed Mental Health Conditions
Addiction often goes hand-in-hand with other mental health disorders, like anxiety and depression. Your loved one’s addiction treatment program likely addressed their underlying mental health conditions, but it’s possible for symptoms to creep back to the surface during recovery. If this is the case, or if their mental health wasn’t addressed originally in treatment, your loved one may return to alcohol or drug use.
5. Positive Life Events
Unfortunately, stressful and traumatic experiences aren’t the only ones that can cause a relapse. Even happy and jubilant events can potentially trigger a drinking or drug use recurrence if the individual in recovery feels justified in substance use to celebrate. And, if the positive event comes with new responsibilities, as in the birth of a child or a job promotion, your loved one may feel increased stress or pressure – both of which are known addiction relapse triggers.
6. Social Isolation
In the last year, we’ve unfortunately seen how the pandemic has driven billions of people into isolation. While for a good reason this past year, social isolation can lead to feelings of depression and anxiety. It can also trigger a return to alcohol or drug use, for those who are trying to maintain their recovery.
If your loved one has struggled with isolation throughout the pandemic or if you notice that they’re purposely shutting out friends and family, they may be struggling with loneliness and isolation. It’s important for you to reach out to them and get them addiction treatment help if they are drinking or using drugs again.
Discover Personalized Support for Your Recovery at The Raleigh House
At The Raleigh House, we know that your loved one’s recovery is worth the extra effort, even if they have recently relapsed. We have over 10 years of experience helping families like yours overcome addiction, using a continuum of care that includes both evidence-based treatments and experiential therapies.
Our east to west approach to treatment offers a customized treatment experience to get to the bottom of your loved one’s addiction and mental health disorder, so they can effectively heal and get back on the road of recovery. Contact our expert team today to learn more about our approach to addiction recovery and relapse prevention.