Is a Relapse Prevention Group Different from a Support Network?

Relapse is one of the biggest fears for people leaving treatment, even if they’ve undergone incredible transformation over the last several months. Relapse prevention groups are similar to support groups, but they often provide a more specialized type of treatment and guidance that helps you continue developing coping strategies and skills to prevent relapsing.

How a Relapse Prevention Group Helps

Group therapy plays a big role in most treatment programs. Whether you attend a long-term residential facility or go to outpatient rehab, support groups and peer sharing will likely be a major part of your treatment. As you progress through the different stages of treatment, each group will serve a special role in contributing to your skills and understanding of yourself. Relapse prevention groups are a specialized type of group that can help you continue to abstain from drugs and alcohol after you’ve gone through detox and completed treatment.

Relapse Prevention Group Characteristics

People who need additional help staying sober after rehab can benefit from a relapse prevention group. Even after a successful period in rehab, staying sober once you’re back in the real world and surrounded by temptation can be difficult. Often, residential programs give people a form of structure and routine they are unaccustomed to.

Gaining total independence again can be frightening, and the stress of trying to stay sober alone can be too much for some people. Relapse prevention groups offer a source of accountability and support that a regular support network may not be able to; the group is focused entirely on skill-building and education to prepare for “high-risk” situations that could ultimately induce a relapse.

Relapse vs. Support Networks

Support networks offer a more generalized approach to maintaining sobriety; you may encounter people who have been sober for a month on one side of the circle and someone who has abstained for a year on the other. Peer support provides a greater perspective and offers hope for people who are all at different stages of recovery. Support groups give non-clinical help; people are usually given a group partner who is at a different stage of recovery so they can help encourage and learn from one another.

Support networks are also self-funded, so a collection basket is usually passed around during meetings for people to offer donations. Relapse prevention groups are often a continuation of therapy, run by an outside clinic or through the rehab facility. These groups can help people recognize the warning signs and triggers that lead to rehab during the early stages so they can prevent things from getting worse later.

Find the Help You Need Here

Call us today at 800-411-8019 to learn more about drug and alcohol treatment near you; we can also help you find relapse prevention groups, support networks and other recovery resources that will help you continue to live a healthy, sober life.