This article is intended to be used by the general public for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be used as a reference for educational research papers, nor is it a reflection of the services available through our Rehab Program in Thailand.
Going through inpatient rehabilitation for much needed assistance with alcoholism offers a person a fairly ‘safe’ haven.
The temptation to relapse is that much more difficult because alcohol is strictly forbidden, but what happens when they return to their own environment?
A crucial part of any inpatient rehabilitation stay for alcoholics is understanding potential triggers that can cause a relapse.
This education includes how to avoid them where possible, how to exit them if suddenly confronted by the opportunity, and how to minimize the risk of relapsing back into a habit that has cast a very large, dark shadow over an alcoholic’s life.
How to minimize the risk of relapse:
It is important to understand that everyone is different and will therefore have their own triggers and reasons for being tempted back into drinking.
This is why crucial lessons must be learnt and rules applied and adhered to if a person is to continue progressing along the road of sobriety.
Here are 3 key issues that may need adapting to suit each person, but as guidelines they should certainly help.
It may seem very tempting to re-visit old drinking haunts such as favourite bars or clubs to ‘prove’ that you can forego alcohol.
Don’t put unnecessary temptation in your path. Stay away from these places even when the urge to visit is extremely powerful. This is particularly important during the early stages of recovery when such temptations will appear to be particularly attractive.
Ditch unhealthy friends:
This may not be easy, but if you are to maintain sobriety it is important to change your social scene. Those friends who continue to drink heavily will only lead you into temptation.
Make it very clear that you need time and space, and that you will not be mixing with them because the struggle to stay away from alcohol is difficult enough as it is.
Seek out new friends via hobbies or pastimes that interest you but do not involve having to go for a drink before, during or after the event. Your sponsor and therapist should be able to give pointers in this direction.
Don’t ditch therapy:
It cannot be stressed just how important aftercare and continued therapy is in terms of maintaining long-term sobriety. While it would be nice to think you can ‘go it alone’ this course of action will only heap more unnecessary pressure on you.
Having sounding boards in terms of your therapist, sponsor, and members of any voluntary organization whose meetings you attend will do wonders for your determination to stick to the progressive healing that must be strived for.
Courage, willpower and determination:
There are many issues a recovering alcoholic will face on a daily basis. This is part of the challenge, but they are challenges that must be faced up to and met head on.
Don’t keep niggles to yourself, no matter how small. Discuss them, talk about them and understand them.
The continuation of a sober life is not a straight path and never will be, but a willingness to take, and change direction as needed will greatly increase your chances of maintaining an alcohol-free future and avoiding relapse.