The Top 10 Relapse Prevention Skills

26 Dec 2022

Parenting an adult addict can be a painfully isolating experience if you allow stigma to keep you from seeking support. However, it could help save lives, and all resources that help protect life and safety have great meaning and value. In the face of a craving, it is possible to outsmart it by negotiating with yourself a delay in use. It hinges on the fact that most cravings are short-lived—10 to 15 minutes—and it’s possible to ride them out rather than capitulate.

relapse prevention skills

Once a person begins drinking or taking drugs, it’s hard to stop the process. Good treatment programs recognize the relapse process and teach people workable exit strategies from such experiences. That said, particularly for the briefer MET/CBT, these interventions are likely to be more cost-effective than comprehensive family relapse prevention skills therapies that require many more clinical resources to achieve similar outcomes. Instead, it can be an opportunity to examine what lifestyle changes, coping skills, and adjustments may be needed to prevent relapse in the future. It can begin with an emotional relapse, followed by mental and then physical relapses.

Physical Relapse

Addiction Resource is not a healthcare provider, nor does it claim to offer sound medical advice to anyone. Addiction Resource does not favor or support any specific recovery center, nor do we claim to ensure the quality, validity, or effectiveness of any particular treatment center. No one should assume the information provided on Addiction Resource as authoritative and should always defer to the advice and care provided by a medical doctor. Reflect on what triggered the relapse—the emotional, physical, situational, or relational experiences that immediately preceded the lapse. Inventory not only the feelings you had just before it occurred but examine the environment you were in when you decided to use again. Sometimes nothing was going on—boredom can be a significant trigger of relapse.

It is generally felt that big changes should be avoided in the first year until individuals have enough perspective to see their role, if any, in these issues and to not focus entirely on others. Clinical experience has shown that occasional thoughts of using need to be normalized in therapy. They do not mean the individual will relapse or that they are doing a poor job of recovery. Once a person has experienced addiction, it is impossible to erase the memory. But with good coping skills, a person can learn to let go of thoughts of using quickly. Occasional, brief thoughts of using are normal in early recovery and are different from mental relapse.

What is Relapse Prevention?

The influence of dopamine, the “happy” chemical, can cause changes in the brain. Substance use can affect the brain by damaging systems responsible for cognitive control. The resurgence of physical health symptoms after a period of well-being signifies a physical health relapse. Cognitive restructuring can be used to tackle cognitive errors such as the abstinence violation effect.

A RESEARCHER’S PERSPECTIVE: What Can We Do When … – Brain & Behavior Research Foundation


Posted: Thu, 06 Apr 2023 07:00:00 GMT [source]