It’s a painful truth: most relapses occur in the first days of recovery. But there are ways that you can prevent relapse from happening.
Keeping to a regular routine helps to prevent unexpected tempting situations, or triggers that could tempt you to use again.
Find a mentor or sober friend to reach out to when you feel the urge to use—someone who can provide the support and guidance you need.
A controlled environment, clear of addictive substances, drugs and alcohol will help to prevent future relapse. That’s why many addicts enter sober living after completing rehab: this helps to assure that there are no triggers or temptations to use.
A diet of whole-grain fiber, leafy green vegetables, lots of water, healthy fat can help to keep the body in top shape. When you feel physically good, you feel better mentally.
This one’s simple—get 8 hours of sleep a night for optimal functioning.
Exercise will help to get your endorphins moving, repair damaged areas of the brain, relax you and ease stress and anxiety, and generally heal the body, especially after a long period of substance use disorder.
Avoid Major Life Changes.
It may be too early to return to work, or any other location that you know will be stressful.
How easily we forget the things we can be grateful for: food, shelter, family. And in sobriety, that forgetfulness doesn’t cease. Though there is a the feeling of walking on air in the first days to weeks or months of sobriety (known as “the pink cloud”)—the feeling that nothing is wrong—this happiness does fade. And when it does, it’s crucial to hold onto and remind yourself of what you are thankful for.
Setting up a sobriety toolkit during this period of time would likely prove to be a very strong asset to a successful recovery.
While many do relapse in the first days of recovery, there’s no reason to give up hope. Relapse is often a part of recovery for many addicted individuals. Accepting past mistakes and moving forward is crucial to preventing future slip-ups, and planning ahead for the potential problems to come.