In the U.S. alone, around 20 million people are in recovery for alcohol or drug dependence.
Any of the many different problems they have to deal with on a daily basis can make them experience a relapse. Many of these people will in fact relapse. The problem is significantly growing, as there are already 22 million people needing treatment for addiction at the moment added to the above numbers. What can we do? Experts at the recovery process say that starting a recovery system that is reliable and maintaining it is paramount.
Many people mistakenly consider the recovery as a matter of abstinence.
Get addicts to quit with their drinking, using drugs or engaging in addictive behavior - give them a detox - and that's recovery.
We wouldn't have the problems we do today if it were only that simple.
The field of research into recovery is only now starting to grow. Recovery is complex and has many faces and paths that lead to it according to many experts in the field of addiction treatment. A single solution is unsuitable for everyone.
While 12-step groups, such as Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous or Gamblers Anonymous, for instance, are the most common, there are also other ways to recover. Many recovering addicts can be in a maintenance program for their dependency and in recovery too. They might be on a maintenance plan, like buprenorphine or methadone, but also be clean and have a great personal health. Until recently it was thought that individuals can't be on a maintenance program and in recovery as well, so it is a new recognition.
The process through which an individual achieves abstinence, proper personal health, overall wellness and a good quality of life requires change and is referred to as recovery. Wellness-orientated and long-term is how it is more often being described. The process involves changing and rediscovering one's self through growth. The modern approach to recovery understands that there is more than one road that leads to better health and recovery is seen as a way of managing the addiction by providing support that lasts well into the future and this is nothing like the previous approach that focused more on individual treatment sessions.
It's not practical to put a person through detox and thereafter expect them to carry on with their lives without them using as it is short-sighted and unrealistic.
There are many problems that could have led to the substance abuse, and clearing the toxic substances through detox does not address these.
The most effective approach for recovery has thus been widely established as the holistic person approach to healing.
Researchers have discovered many pathways while they were analyzing roads to recovery.
For some people, it is the knowledge that they have their lives back under their control. Everyone in recovery has their own explanation of what recovery means. For most, recovery involves getting a second chance, being reborn or having a new opportunity to do things different in their lives. Others define recovery as having a family and friend support network, being free of drugs and other addictive substances, achieving goals, having a positive attitude, having improved living conditions, improved finances and having better physical and psychological well being.
The emerging model of recovery care understands that a system approach is needed.
When using a chronic care pattern in order to maintain and manage continued recovery, regular and continued support services cannot be ignored. This model emphasises on post treatment monitoring and support, long-term recovery oriented recovery education [stage appropriate], peer-based recovery coaching, linkage to communities of recovery and re-intervention wherever necessary. The emerging model also includes ongoing treatment, peer support, and auxiliary services as part of the overall treatment plan for their addiction. The ROSCs (Recovery-Oriented Systems of Care) are made in such a way as to help those who are going through addiction recovery to recover, not just over a short period of time, but over their lifespan. There are many treatment options to choose from under the ROSCs and there are also various support choices available for the recovery process. They provide services in installations that grow with time to address the constant and changing requirements of the person in recovery and that are unbundled and adjustable.
A comprehensive array of services is provided to the individuals in recovery at ROSCs which are coordinated to provide support throughout the individual's unique journey to sustained recovery. The point of ROSCs is to achieve a high quality of life as well as health, wellness and abstinence and this is achieved through both formal and informal support that is based on community and thus founded on the strength of individuals and their ability to get back up
When people face stressful challenges that might lead to relapse, they need access to creative things that they can make use of. These can include having the information needed to call friends who can offer support and encouragement, developing a circle of friends who are non drinking and non-using and possibly having the right places to live.
In other words, new connections need to be developed by those in recovery. In order to reduce the temptation for them to fall back into their old habits, they need to find new friends that are clean and sober. They often also need to move or change their habitat in order to get away from the familiar places that they associate with using the addictive substances. They need to pay attention to their spiritual progress, possibly through meditation or introspection or prayer.
Addicts that have been drinking for a long time, like 20 or more years, can't just complete a one-month program and have a chance of staying sober and clean because they are chronic, severe cases. They will need a transitional phase along with a place where they can receive continued support, counselling, education and any other services, which can help them to reach a stage from where they can regain entry within the society and have a positive chance at recovery. A sober-living home or a halfway house may be this transitional step for these individuals.
Most of these people need to find out how to present their resumes and CVs, how to present oneself at a job interview and even how to fill and follow up on job applications. Many people learn how they can be stable in life with the aid of sober-living homes and halfway houses.
Every recovering addict has different needs. A solid support system is necessary for all the people while they build upon their strengths in recovery. They might need to repair their relations with loved ones, to find work, a new place to live.
Many addicts understand well how peer pressure works. Peer pressure is a major factor in many addiction cases. Recovery experts to sustain recovery recognise the benefit of peer pressure also during the recovery. The approach of 12 step groups: encouraging peer pressure will ensure a long term recovery.
If you are undergoing recovery you can avail of counselling services [individual or group] and other behavioural therapies. An effective recovery program definitely has these aspects as they are critical to the process.
For many, but not all, people, medication is a crucial and important part of their recovery. Take the medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor if you are a prescribed medication - perhaps to help eliminate or reduce cravings, help with anxiety or depression. You need to continue to take them so you can give them some time to start displaying benefits in your symptoms since these medications might need some time to take effect (anti-anxiety drugs and antidepressants).
Join and participate in 12-step groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. These 12-step groups are not affiliated with any sect, denomination, politics, religion, Institute or organisation. A lot of them have special groups for women. During your rehab, but also after it, joining these groups has displayed many benefits. That means that even if you have completed your treatment you shouldn't give up attending 12-step group meetings. In fact, your ability to draw upon the support of others who understand your situation may be the necessity for your sustained recovery.
You will sometimes find it useful to have a condensed version of what should be done to get help in the prevention.
It's not a complete disaster for you to slip. It should not be viewed as a failure or a lack of courage or willpower at that. It happens. What then should you opt to do? You should be getting back on the path to recovery. Go back into an encouraging environment where you will be able to continue your recovery and have bigger chances of avoiding full-blown relapse.
Discussing this with peers that have had a relapse before and managed to overcome it is also very significant. You will need a person to encourage you and provide support and advice without judging you and they will be able to do this because they've been where you are. They can provide you with the tools to cope and also give you information about the things that worked for them and countless others, and therefore, you will be able to prevent relapse from occurring again. They will help you realize, and that is crucial, that relapse is actually normal, it can be stopped and you can develop your own methods for avoiding it in the future.