Drug addiction relapse rates can vary between 40%-60%, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Many things can trigger a relapse, including:
- Stress or anxiety
- Negative emotions or thoughts (anger, frustration, guilt)
- People, places, or things that remind you of your prior drug use
While steering clear of these triggers is a major step toward avoiding a relapse, you can take other precautions, too, including these:
- Speak to an expert about any drug-use urges or negative emotions or thoughts that would lead to use.
- Remember the entire picture regarding your drug use. Try not to romanticize it.
- Reenter a treatment program or facility, especially if you feel the urge to use.
The road to recovery is long and tough. It will come with its fair share of bumps along the way, including the potential for a relapse. You need to understand it’s part of the process, and it’s important to address the relapse before it evolves into a full-blown recurring addiction.
“Cravings can last for a long time after stopping—some for years, depending on use,” Vonnie Nealon, LCDC, a licensed therapist and chemical dependency counselor, tells WebMD Connect to Care. “If you have relapsed on methamphetamine then reach out for help immediately.”
Here are six things you can do to get back on track in your battle with meth addiction if you relapse.
- Stop using immediately.
- Stay positive—a relapse is just a bump in the road to recovery.
- Try to pinpoint any triggers (emotions, thoughts, people, places) that caused the relapse.
- Seek help from a doctor, psychologist, therapist, or support group.
- Restart your treatment program, whether inpatient or outpatient. It may be worth trying another type of treatment if you and your doctor believe the first wasn’t effective enough.
- Ask your doctor or therapist to help you develop a plan to prevent further relapses. For example, your plan could identify the emotional, mental, and physical signs that you may be about to have a setback, and it could list the steps you’ll take when you notice these signs.
Don’t Wait. Get Help Now.
If you or a loved one are struggling with meth addiction, WebMD Connect to Care Advisors are standing by to help.