Knowing and avoiding drug use triggers are important in your lasting and successful recovery and sobriety. Find out the 10 drug use triggers that you should avoid.
Contrary to popular belief, not everyone who undergoes addiction recovery goes through relapse. The key to a sustainable recovery and sobriety is avoiding triggers. Here are 10 triggers that you should avoid.
Avoiding Drug Use Triggers
Due to the high percentage of relapse among recovering addicts, people often believe that relapse is really an inherent part of recovery–that relapse is inevitable. However, this is absolutely untrue. As a recovering addict, part of your recovery plan is in identifying your own personal drug use triggers and learn how you can manage them. This is especially true during your first years our of rehab, when the cravings and triggers are strong. However, you should find relief from the fact that as you hold on to your sobriety for longer, the easier it will be to avoid triggers and resist cravings–recovery will be inherently part of who you are.
10 Drug Use Triggers to Avoid
The following drug use triggers are also applicable to other kinds of addiction, such as alcohol and behavioral addictions. Learn which ones are more applicable to you and which ones are your personal triggers so you can manage them for a more continuous sobriety and long-term recovery.
1. H.A.L.T. These are the primary high-risk drug use triggers that stand for hungry, angry, lonely, and tired. This is why you should avoid these conditions through self-care. Have a healthy diet, learn to manage your anger or avoid situations where you will be angry, make peace with yourself and with others, preoccupy yourself with your passions, reconnect with friends and positive support systems, and find healthy ways to relax and unwind.
2. Emotions. Overwhelming negative emotions are very risky in recovery. While these are normal, addiction treatment in rehab should be able to help you learn healthy coping mechanisms so you can manage them and be on top of your emotions.
3. Stress. Stress is inevitable in life and it is one of the most common addiction relapse triggers. Losing someone you love, losing a job, increased responsibilities at work, problems at home and many other stressful things can be drug use triggers.
4. Over-confidence and complacency. These two go together. When you feel like you’re doing well in your recovery, you may feel like you don’t need to try to apply the things you learned in rehab. You may become complacent and even go to places and meet people you should avoid because you think that you will not be affected. Stay humble and know that addiction is a chronic disease that can catch you when you least expect it.
5. Ill health. Mental or physical illnesses can cause you to relapse. Pain and health problems, as well as mental health medication can cause you to seek addictive behavior once more.
6. Loneliness and isolation. In recovery, one rule is to avoid the people that you used to be with during your days of active addiction. Out of rehab, this may make you feel isolated as you feel like you don’t have friends anymore. This is why it’s important to reconnect with old friends who are positive support systems as well as to keep in touch with your peers and counselors in rehab, especially by attending after care.
7. Relationships. As a general rule, you should avoid dating or getting into new relationships during the first year of your recovery. Breakups and the stresses of new relationships can put you at a great risk for relapse as it is one of the big drug use triggers. Besides, it is best to build a relationship with yourself first through self-care.
8. Positive events. When things are doing great, it can also be a relapse trigger. This is especially true when you get a new job or a promotion, for example. The added expectations and responsibilities can also put you at an increased risk for relapse.
9. Glamorizing drug use. Remembering your drug use and seeing how great of a life it was is a major warning sign and relapse or drug use trigger. Not acknowledging the destruction and suffering you caused during active addiction is unhealthy to your recovery.
10. People and places. Going to places where you once used, or meeting up with people who you used to do drugs with is without a doubt a huge relapse trigger. Not only will you be reminded, you may also be pressured into using again.
Even with the best-laid plans and the noblest of intentions, some people can really relapse, so it pays to always be on your toes as a recovering addict. The risk to relapse is always there as drug use triggers seem to always be around every turn you take in life. However, relapsing doesn’t mean you’re a failure and addiction treatment is a sham. The sooner you act and get back to treatment after you relapse, the better. This is because you may need additional treatment to address your issues and triggers so you can get back on the road to recovery once more.
For help with relapse and addiction rehab, call or text us at 09175098826.