Even after the successful completion of a drug or alcohol addiction treatment program, many individuals relapse. Without a relapse prevention plan it can happen a couple days after rehab; it can happen months later.
Experiencing a relapse can be discouraging, for both the addict and their loved ones, but it doesn’t mean that all hope of a successful addiction recovery is lost. It just means that your loved one has experienced a setback on their journey to sobriety. Depending on how you approach them and their drug relapse, you have the opportunity to help them recover again.
No one wants to think about the possibility of relapsing, but its a part of the reality of addiction. The best thing that you can do as their mother, father, wife, husband, or friend is to be prepared for that possibility, and have a plan of action should they have a drug relapse.
Understanding Why Drug Relapses Occur
Crucial to being a source of aid during a relapse is understanding, first, why it happens. Often people assume that if an individual experiences a relapse it’s because they made the conscious choice to.
With addiction, however, it isn’t quite that simple. Addiction is a chronic condition that cannot be cured; the addict will always be addicted. That said, addiction can be managed successfully and soberly, if approached with the right treatment or program.
When it comes right down to it, there are two reasons that your loved one relapsed:
- They weren’t ready.
- They weren’t in a facility that was right for them.
Of course, if the person isn’t ready to get better, no program is going to get them sober. Part of finding a successful recovery from alcohol or drugs is understanding the obsession of use, and revising the psyche of it. If they’re not ready to evaluate themselves or their addiction, they won’t successfully get and stay sober.
If an individual relapses, that doesn’t mean addiction recovery is hopeless. It only means that they didn’t get what they needed to succeed from themselves, from the treatment facility.