Relapse holds a lot of weight when it comes to fears and stigma, and many people in recovery want to avoid relapse at all costs. Relapse is defined by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) as, “…A return to drug use after an attempt to stop.”
If you’ve recently entered recovery, you may be hearing intimidating messages from friends or family about relapse – but most of what people tend to believe regarding this topic is false. The more we can educate ourselves on what relapse is, how it normally tends to effect people and how common it occurs, the better our chances are of taking preventative measures – and of approaching recovery one step at a time. Take a look at the most common myths our society tends to hold about relapse, followed by the truth:
Myth #1: Once you relapse, you’ve failed recovery.
Truth: Relapse is often a normal part of recovery. Just as life has ups and downs, trials and errors, lessons and growth, so does addiction recovery. If a person relapses, they can get right back up – they can lean on their support network and become even more determined in recovery as they learn what works for them and what doesn’t.
Myth #2: Relapse is for the weak.
Truth: A 2015 study published in the International Journal of High Risk Behaviors & Addiction found that not only is relapse quite common (especially within the first 6 months of treatment), it’s a normal part of the healing process. Weakness doesn’t hold much weight when it comes to addiction recovery, because many people who relapse actually become stronger since they’re now aware of triggers that they were unaware of before.
Relapse is but one part of recovery, and a person can still succeed even after having one – or multiple – relapses. It’s truly a learning process, and each person’s journey is different.
Avalon Malibu is a world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at 888-958-7511 for a consultation. It’s never too late, and there are people here ready to help you.