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Relapsed? Here’s What to Do — and What Not to Do

Did you know that most people who were once addicted to drugs or alcohol relapse after getting sober? Cravings, emotions, and stress lead many individuals to make impulsive decisions they later regret. If you started drinking or using drugs again, here is how you can get back on the road to sobriety. Don’t Panic Before you throw up your hands in despair, ask yourself if you lapsed or relapsed. For example, a lapse occurred if you spent a night drinking. When morning came, you felt ashamed, embarrassed, and worried. You may also feel as if you let your loved ones down. Remember, just because you made a mistake does not mean you have not earned the right to sobriety. It also does not mean you lose “credit” for the weeks, months, or years you spent sober. Using for one night means you made a mistake — that is all. Relapse is more serious. Despite your best intentions, you are back to the same bad habits that plagued you the first time around: lying, ignoring obligations, and isolating yourself from those who care the most for you. The good news is that just because you started using again does not mean you cannot get sober again. It does means you need to spend more time examining your feelings and motives and identifying the triggers that lead to abuse. Whether you lapsed or relapsed, do not overlook it and assume that things will be different this time. Even a one-time lapse is an indication that a bigger threat lies ahead. Tell Someone You Trust Because individuals struggling with addiction often isolate themselves out of shame or embarrassment, it is important that you tell someone you trust right away if you experience a relapse. Call a sponsor, a counselor at The Ranch PA, a family member, or a close friend. The sooner you are honest about your relapse, the sooner you can recover. Together, you can develop a plan that gets you back on track to sobriety. That may include a return to rehab or private counseling. Whatever it takes to get and stay sober is what you need to commit to. Do not try to go it alone. Stay Positive The only real recovery failure is making the same mistakes over and over. Remember, everybody makes mistakes. But as long as you learn from yours by addressing the underlying feelings that led to your relapse, you can turn a bad situation to your advantage — and the life-lasting sobriety you deserve. For more information about addiction and recovery, contact The Ranch PA today. Photo Via

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