Relapse prevention is a crucial aspect of any inpatient rehab program. It is important that this is taught because, no matter how successful and productive one’s experience is in any given drug or alcohol rehab center, there is still always an underlying threat and possibility of relapse in such an individual. The fundamental problem here is one of time. Time is a huge factor in the addiction and rehabilitation quest, as it is in any other aspect or facet of life. It breaks down to the simple fact that, when one abuses drugs or alcohol, he or she usually abuse them for a matter of several years before he or she attempts to seek out rehabilitation for their crisis. Even the longest inpatient rehab programs usually don’t last for more than three months. So it comes down to the simple fact of how can an individual possibly hope to efficiently and adequately address every single aspect and facet of addiction that has accumulated over the course of several years in just a few months? It’s not possible.
This is why recovery is an ongoing process. It is also why they are called, “recovering addicts,” not, “recovered addicts.” The difference is a huge one. No matter how stellar one’s experience was in rehab, there will always be more he, or she has to work on to some degree even after rehab is completed. For this reason, aftercare programs are offered
Relapse is the greatest threat that a recovering addict faces. It is the one thing that could occur that would seem to diminish everything else that the person has worked tried so hard to address. Also, it is that simple occurrence that could effectively take the person’s life and indeed ruin it for good, as most overdose deaths occur during a relapse. At the very least, a decline will set an individual behind quite a bit, and he or she will feel as though a lot of work and a lot of effort was all for naught.
Relapse prevention teaches recovering addicts what aspects of life were most likely to have caused it in the past. When these things are found the person can and does effectively address them and handle them.
Relapse Prevention History
Relapse prevention has been taught for decades. It became apparent in the mid-20th century that addicts needed to put some thought and work into what life would be like after rehab was completed and just how they were going to prevent a relapse. Granted, some addicts can engage in an inpatient rehab program and move through the whole program to the point of completion, and they never experience the threat again. These are few and far between, especially with the graduates of typical twenty-eight-day rehab programs. The majority however either experienced the urge or they gave in to the urge.
Because of this occurrence, the majority of addicts in the nation began to receive relapse prevention assistance in inpatient rehab centers, and overall success rates of rehab centers started to go up because of that. Today it is a vital part of a rehab program.
Relapse Prevention at Serenity
Preventing relapse is taught with pride and efficacy at Serenity. We recognize this as being an influential and successful aspect of our program, and the results are incredible because of it. Thousands of clients have benefited from relapse prevention, which makes sense given its ability to teach an individual how to avoid one.
Relapse prevention is an act of not only teaching clients how to identify their relapse triggers and stay away from them but to also examine just what goes into it and what will ultimately occur. For instance:
- Clients are taught that, whenever they are contemplating relapse, to play the tape through.
- When they think about using drugs and alcohol again, the supposed dream that they are having is that this they will be able to control themselves and just have one drink or one hit.
- One drink usually leads to more drinks.
- One hit leads to more hits.
- At the end of it all, the individual will wake up the next day feeling disappointed, hung over, and useless and shiftless.
- This then leads to more substance abuse, and suddenly the tape has been played through, and the individual is back where he or she began.
The Benefits of Relapse Prevention
Relapse prevention is a highly valuable and unique rehabilitation technique. It is effective, to say the least, and it gets down to the bottom of any addict’s substance abuse problem and addresses it from a causative and pro-abstinence way. With relapse prevention, recovering addicts can continue to work on themselves even after rehab is completed without the ever present nag and urge to break their new found sobriety and abstinence by relapsing.