Common relapse triggers and how to manage them:
Relapse triggers are broken into a few groups: emotional, mental, environmental and those that are easily overlooked.
Here are 10 most common relapse triggers :
1/ HALT: Hungry Angry, Lonely, Tired. The acronym HALT is used to describe high risk situations for those in recovery. It’s good to be aware of this then you can be vigilant in preventing g yourself from entering these states. If recovery is your priority then make sure you don’t become too Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired. This means plan meals, stick to a sleep schedule and attend support groups.
2/ Emotions: Perceived negative emotions often lead to people using or drinking in the first place and can easily lead a person back to Addiction.
3/ Stress: Stress could also be a number one addiction relapse trigger because of it’s broad range of effects on the mind and body. HALT can lead to stress , as can a thousand other circumstances that differs for each individual. Losing a job, or a loved one, increased responsibility at home/work and health problems can all increase stress. The key here is to be proactive about stress prevention and being mindful (and honest) about what causes stress for you.
4/ Over-Confidence: Becoming over-confident in recovery puts you at risk for a relapse or trigger. Having self-confidence is necessary but becoming over-confident to the point of complacency crosses a line from healthy confidence to over-confidence and relapse or trigger risk. After some time in recovery, as you get stronger you may begin to feel like you no longer need to follow a relapse prevention plan. You might think your strong in recovery and put yourself in increasingly risky situations-while also no longer working on a recovery programme is a definite recipe for disaster. Stay humble by giving back to others if you can and always remind yourself that addiction is a chronic disease; no matter how strong you feel you will never be able to have “just one” drink or drugs.
5/ Mental or physical illness: Depression, anxiety and other underlying mental illnesses can trigger alcohol/drug use relapse. Physical illness and pain can also put you at risk of relapsing, as your body is stressed. Prescription drugs for mental and physical illnesses can be mind altering and trigger addiction and relapse. Ask your doctor not to give you non- addictive prescription drugs is important. Get treatment for underlying mental illness and monitor your thinking and feeling with a journal to help notice when you are slipping into old patterns.
6/ Social Isolation: Reluctance to form alcohol or drug support system through AA or NA can lead to social isolation and loneliness. The more you become socially isolated the easier it is to rationalise alcohol or drug use to yourself. Social anxiety can also be a struggle for recovering addicts which is why having a sponsor, a counsellor can help you avoid social isolation. Make forming an alcohol and drug support network a priority.
7/ Sex and relationships: Avoid dating in recovery for the first year. New romantic relationships can put you at risk to relapse. A break up with a new partner could lead you back into drinking or using due to the emotional stress. A potential cross over from your initial addiction to a sex or love addiction; or using relationships to fill the void left by sobriety also can trigger alcohol or drug use.
8/ Getting a promotion or getting a new job: Positive life events are often overlooked as relapse triggers. Getting a promotion or a new job can lead to the urge to celebrate. You may fall into the false idea that celebrating with a alcohol or drug use ” just this once” will be OK. Increased income can trigger thoughts of being able to afford alcohol or drugs. It’s important to make a plan for how you would celebrate without alcohol or drugs in advance, so you don’t put yourself in this situation.
9/ Reminiscing about glamorising past alcohol or drug use: Relapse is a process. If you find yourself reminiscing about times you use to drink or use in a way that overlooks the pain and suffering your addiction caused, this is a major red flag.
10/ Social situations or places drugs are available: Another one of the most common relapse triggers is putting yourself in situations where alcohol and drugs are available. It is not always so straight-forward though-simply driving through an old neighbourhood or catching the smell of a pub as you walk by can be enough to triggers intense urges to drink or use. Don’t drive by old neighbourhoods and don’t put yourself in a position to walk by pubs. Avoid them.
I promise not to phone you when I’m drunk. Alcohol you latter. Hahababaha…..
I was going to get a 12 pack of beer, but I got 24 just in case. Hahababaha…..
My relationship with whiskey is on the rocks. Hahababaha…….
How do you fix a broken bottle of Johnnie Walker? By using scotch tape.
Drinking too many margaritas is liable to tequil-ya. Hahababaha…..
I got a part in a movie called “Cocaine.” I only have one line. Hahababaha…..
I watched a documentary on LSD last night. It really changed my perception. Hahababaha…..
1/ Deep breathing. 2/ Imagining safe space. 3/ Muscle relaxation. 4/ Visisualization. 5/ Remember to breathe. 6/ Change your body temperature. 7/ Stop negative thoughts. 8/ Time-Out. 9/ Eat well balanced meals. 10/ Get enough sleep. 11/ Count to 10 slowly. 12/ Talk to someone close to you. 13/ Learn what triggers your anxiety. 14/ Be positive. 15/ Try to self-talk yourself positive affirmations. 16/ Get counselling from a psychologist. 17/ Have a bath, with bubbles. 18/ Do things you like doing. Like reading, drawing, painting, blogging, writing, taking your dog for a walk, go to the beach and be with positive friends. 19/ No when you are having an anxiety attack, and Remember to breath. 20/ Write a journal with your thoughts, triggers and your goals.
I asked a Chinese girl, receptionist for the admission number. She said, “Sex, Sex! Sex. Free Sex tonight.” I said, “WTF.” Then her friend said, “She means 666-3629.” Hahahababa.
I just got hit in the head with a can of coke, yesterday. Luckily for me, it was a soft drink. Hahaba…
My friend use to be addicted to drinking dish washing liquid. He’s clean now. Hahabaha….
A friend of mine is really addicted to drinking brake fluid. He says he can stop any time. Hahababaha….
I bumped into a friend at the shopping plaza. He got talking, explaining his Twitter addiction to me. I didn’t follow him. Hahababaha….
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey but I turned myself around. Hahababaha….
How did the crack dealer react when you told him a joke? He Cracked up. Hahababaha…
I am not going to be anonymous. Nor am I ashamed. What use to be my mess is now a message. There’s life after addiction, and I really would like other addicts to find it too.
My name is void, Void in the darkest days, running to start a warmth fire. Sitting with strangers who asked me my name, “Void” I said. They told me I have a beautiful name. Void, my name. Void in the strangest days, feeling like your spinning in a Void of cloud, waiting to maybe suck all Void up, cause Void is a dark black hole with a purple cloud, spinning, waiting to suck people up. Void is my name, and I am desperate to be set free. Void with her long brown hair, and big brown eyes, a smirk, as I fidget with my keys, I wonder what my mum and dad were thinking calling me Void. Haha….I chuckle. Void is a empty vacuum. SO, my mum and dad called me after a vacuum.
Life is your life, fear of the unknown of it all. People with faces so beautiful, scared, afraid, guilty, calm, anxious, depressed, helpless, sad, weary, forgetting, and everything else. The beauty of a face that smiles on a dreary day is magical.