The road to recovery is oftentimes a bumpy one, with many ups and downs along the way. Some days you might feel like you are ahead of your addiction and other times you might feel like going back to your old ways. Although many people experience relapse throughout the recovery process, a person rarely relapses without fair warning.
The main thing to look for are triggers, which means anything that leads you back to your drug of choice. Triggers can be old friends that you used to hang out with and use with. Other triggers might be a favorite bar, an unresolved psychological issue, a major stressful event such as a death in the family, depression or anxiety.
Here are top four warning sings that will tell you if you may be headed toward relapse:
- You stop doing what you need to do to stay clean, happy and grounded. This means stopping AA meetings, group meetings or seeing your counselor. It can also mean stopping exercise, hobbies and interests, or daily routines that keep you away from using.
- You start thinking that one pill or drink won’t do any harm. You’ve been clean for months and are in control, so what’s one little drink right? Wrong, any use at all can kick start you on a downward spiral toward abuse. The rule of thumb is that those who relapse usually pick up right where they left off. It might be slow to start, but you’ll soon be in the same bad place you were when you last quit.
- You start missing the “good old days”. Even though drugs or alcohol caused a lot of strife in your life, you may start missing old friends and thinking about hanging out with them again. You might even remember using as a fun time in your life, forgetting all about the bad that came with it.
- You are incredibly defensive when anyone brings up a change in your mood or behavior.
If you or someone you love is experiencing any of these signs, it’s more important than ever to get help now. Sometimes a phone call, a meeting or a conversation with your counselor or sponsor is all it takes to press “reset” and get your life back on track.
If you need help now, please call Horizon Health Services at (716) 831-1800. We can get you back on the road to recovery.