Methamphetamine (meth) is a powerful stimulant drug. It can easily cause addiction. Because of its potency, it is also one of the hardest drugs to recover from. Relapse is a huge possibility during meth addiction treatment as a result.
Relapse usually takes place in approximately 80% of recovering users between 7 and 10 months after finishing meth rehab, according to multiple studies. It is ultimately up to you, though, whether a relapse leads to a full-fledged return to meth addiction or is just a hiccup on the road to recovery.
Here are 10 things you can do to keep relapse at bay when you are in meth addiction treatment.
10 tips for avoiding relapse
- Make keeping drug-free a major priority. Recovering from a crystal meth addiction is crucial to your quality of life. Everything you care about — your family, friends, profession, and so on – is dependent on it. Make every effort to make it happen.
- Avoid items that remind you of drug use. If you used to get high with certain individuals, in a specific bar’s bathroom, or before doing a specific activity, these factors can work as a trigger for relapsing. Avoid those individuals, places, and situations as much as possible. Make new, healthier routines and activities a part of your life.
- Have a solid escape plan in place. If you can’t avoid your drug triggers, plan ahead where you’ll go, who you’ll call, and measures you can take to prevent relapse. Without proper planning, your likelihood of relapsing is much higher.
- Take care of your body. Exercise regularly, eat healthy food, and think positive. The power of sleep is often underestimated, so get enough sleep each night. If you’re feeling strong and healthy, you will make wiser judgments and better decisions, such as not using drugs.
- Foster your spiritual side. You have different aspects to your personality. When you’re no longer busy finding and taking drugs, you may dedicate more time for developing your spirituality.
- Make friends during recovery. Look for people who both support your sober lifestyle and are actively working toward their own recovery. They could be fellow members of your 12-Step program. When the temptation to relapse hits, you can talk to these people right away for help. They can understand your circumstances and encourage you to keep on the path to recovery.
- Enroll in aftercare. Ensure an active participation and commitment after completing a treatment program – whether it’s outpatient addiction treatment, addiction counseling, personal therapy, group therapy, 12-Step fellowship meetings.
- Keep yourself away from addictive activities. To avoid relapse, you have to stay away from addictive substances like drugs and alcohol. If you can manage not to touch, hold, or be near these substances, it can be very helpful in your addiction recovery journey.
- Make a life plan. Now that crystal meth is no longer the focus of everyday life, you have the opportunity to pursue your aspirations. Create a recovery plan for yourself and focus on each small step you need to take to get where you want to go, whether that means spending more time with your children, returning to school, finding a new job, or becoming involved in a sport or new hobby.
- Celebrate small wins. Celebrating your small successes like being substance free even for one week, one month, or one year, can help you be more motivated to continue on in your journey.
Why does relapse occur?
Many people who have never had a problem with addiction find it difficult to comprehend why relapse happens.
The process of relapsing on meth has been compared to tumbling a line of dominoes. When you leave the safe haven of a drug rehab center, you are forced to confront the world and all of its stresses on your own. The initial issue that occurs is similar to the first domino to fall.
You may be able to maintain their recovery on your own for a while, but without the assistance of a relapse prevention program or support group, you will be forced to face this difficult situation alone.
More problems occur as life progresses, as they do for everyone. If you are a recovering meth addict, however, these issues lead to an ever-increasing world of stress that meth had previously alleviated. As the pressures rise, the desire to revert to old habits, such as using meth, grows. The weight of all the issues and stressors becomes too much toward the end of the line of dominoes, and meth relapse occurs.
How common is meth relapse?
Calculating the rates of meth relapse rates involves keeping track of how frequently persons in recovery consume the drug. Relapse rates for meth are strikingly similar to those for chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
Because of this, many experts in the field of addiction and mental health believe that the treatment for meth addiction is a long-term process that requires ongoing treatment combined with the commitment of the person and support.
It’s crucial to remember one thing, though: If you relapse, it does not immediately imply that recovery has failed. Moreover, it doesn’t mean you will never be successful in quitting meth. Instead, looking at the data, many experts believe that relapse is normal during the treatment process. They think relapse indicates you have yet to discover the fundamental reasons for your drug abuse.
For example, a number of female users of meth say they use the drug to deal with depression.
For instance, if meth is being used to cope with depression, then if depressive symptoms linger following meth addiction treatment, the patient is likely to relapse unless she finds a healthy coping strategy for the symptoms. Relapse can also be leveraged to learn more about the triggers that lead to meth use, as well as preventing future relapse.