What Are the Dangers of Relapsing After Receiving Substance Abuse Treatment?

After rehab, the last thing anyone wants to do is relapse. Unfortunately, many people wind up falling back into old habits. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that anywhere between 40 to 60 percent of people in recovery will relapse, but this shouldn’t deter you from getting treatment.

Even the most diligent people can fall prey to addiction, but if you relapse, it isn’t the end of the line. All of the progress you made so far isn’t erased, and you’ll be equipped with the skills and knowledge you need to get help fast. Relapse does not mean you’ll be enslaved to addiction the rest of your life.

The Dangers of Relapsing

There are various relapse triggers you will face that could tempt you to start using drugs or drinking again. In rehab, you’re introduced to a variety of coping mechanisms and skills that will help you avoid or overcome such temptations, but even the most committed people can slip up and find themselves returning to old habits.

Relapse poses a variety of threats to your health including your physical well-being and mental stability.

Greater Risk of Overdose

From the physical standpoint, people who relapse are more likely to seek out higher quantities of their past substance. After going so long fighting the temptation, you may become impulsive and reckless when you decide to abuse drugs or alcohol again. This can lead to a lack of caution that results in an overdose. Even people who have abused severe drugs for years and think they know all the ins and outs of use can die from a single needle.

You Could Trigger Mental Illness, Too

Many people become substance abusers to cope with psychological problems like depression and anxiety. About 20 percent of Americans with substance use disorder also suffer from a mood disorder. Often times, people turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to self-medicate, but addiction only fuels the difficult emotions connected to these conditions.

In rehab, you will most likely have received a diagnosis or treatment for your mental health. Even if you don’t have a mental disorder presently, relapsing could cause you to feel overwhelming guilt, shame and a sense of failure that pushes you into a depressive episode.

If you have been using therapy to overcome the symptoms of mental illness, drinking or using drugs will make it much harder to stay on top of your progress.

If You Need Help, Call Us Today

Whether you’ve hit a wall in recovery and want to avoid a relapse or are struggling to control your substance abuse now, we want to help. Call one of our representatives at 800-411-8019 to learn more about preventative measures you can take to stop yourself from succumbing to addiction. We can connect you with the right resources you need to succeed in recovery.