Relapse Is Normal. Here’s How to Create an Effective Relapse Plan

Recovering drug or alcohol addicts struggle the most with relapse, as each time they get back to abusing, their recovery is delayed and compromised. Avoiding relapse is an effort that the addict has to put in all aspects of life. Those around them must also reinforce the coping mechanisms and help their recovering friend or family member stay away from triggers.


Creating a relapse plan helps a lot with establishing risks of relapse in the person’s everyday life. Putting together a list of coping mechanisms for realistic situations that may arise can make a huge difference for someone who is trying to beat alcohol or drug addiction.

To create a relapse plan, talk about it with your treatment specialists (your substance abuse counselor), or take the initiative yourself. Here are the steps:

Think Back to Your History with Substance Abuse

Before making a successful relapse plan, it’s important to have a clear picture of your substance abuse and answer a few questions with honesty. Take your time to establish what seem to be the patterns you went through during your addiction.

  • Were you hanging out with the same people when relapsing?
  • Are there places where you were more prone to consume?
  • Is there any thought pattern you connect to relapse episodes?

Determine What Signs of Relapse You Are Usually Showing

There is no standard response or trigger for all persons fighting addiction. In fact, it’s such a personal chain of events, that a relapse plan is highly personalized and adapted to the specifics of your life.

In this section, write down the signs you have been noticing before and during relapse episodes in the past. They can be tied to other mental health issues, stressful events in your life, thought patterns, etc which can be addressed as in patient at rehab cape town.

List Healthy Coping Mechanisms That Are Effective in Your Case

After determining when you should be aware of possible relapse episodes, it’s crucial to have the means to fight them. For each possible scenario where you could be at risk, like having withdrawal symptoms or meeting people with whom you consumed drugs or alcohol, come up with healthy coping mechanisms.

List potential risks you anticipate, like being reunited with family, or going through a hard time, and prepare beforehand for the rough patch ahead. Your substance abuse counselor, therapist, or any addiction specialist you are in touch with, can help you put together a good relapse plan.

Once you have gone through this process and you are confident that your relapse plan covers your situation, share it with your support group. Family members, friends who you trust with your recovery process can help you apply the relapse plan and lower your risks.

Having a structured plan is a helpful tool during the recovery process, and it keeps you focused on your goal. can assist you with more information on how to get the correct mental health treatment.

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