Recognizing Potential Signs of Relapse After Substance Use Treatment

by

If someone you know or love has received treatment for substance use, they have taken crucial steps toward recovery. However, even after seeking and receiving treatment, there is still the potential for relapse.

For someone trying to overcome a substance use disorder, it’s important to know that relapse is not a sign of failure. The recovery process takes time and patience.

However, if a relapse is severe, it can have serious (and potentially fatal) health consequences. If someone in your life has received treatment, it’s important to know signs of relapse after substance use treatment. Here are some warning signs to look for.

Sudden Changes in Attitude

If your loved one displays drastic changes in their attitude, this is a potential warning sign that they have relapsed or may be in danger of doing so. This attitude change could be directed toward their treatment program, their career, social obligations, etc.

Abandoning Daily Structure

Creating a consistent and structured routine is part of a holistic treatment program for overcoming substance use. If a recovering patient abandons their daily schedule and displays erratic behavior, they may be showing warning signs of relapse.

If you notice an alarming shift, one way you can help is encouraging them to adhere to their schedule. Offer to accompany them to treatment sessions and other recovery-related activities.

Practicing Poor Self-Care

Another potential sign of relapse after substance use treatment is disregarding self-care. If your loved one stops practicing personal hygiene or eating regular meals, it may be cause for concern.

Frequent Isolation

Being in the company of friends and loved ones can be an effective treatment tool. For someone recovering from substance use, frequent isolation from others can be dangerous. Time alone with their thoughts may increase his or her chances of relapsing.

You can help by including your loved one in social events and gatherings. Knowing they have that love and support can be powerful.

Spending Time with Old Associations

In some cases, time spent with substance users may have led to a friend or loved one’s addiction in the first place. If they are in the process of receiving treatment and continue to spend time with those people, they are at risk of using again.

To support their long-term wellness, encourage your loved one to disassociate from other substance users to help reduce the potential for relapse.

Displaying Symptoms of Depression

Due to decreased self-esteem or feelings of self-worth, depression is a commonly co-occurring condition with substance use. Some signs of a depression disorder include:

  • Sudden Irritability
  • Lack of interest in activities
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Low energy
  • Problems concentrating

If your loved one displays some of these signs during substance use treatment, they may be at risk of relapsing. Mental illness may cause people to turn to substances as a form of self-medication.

Help Prevent Relapse After Substance Use Treatment

The most effective tool in preventing relapse in your friend or loved one is recognizing prominent signs and helping them get back on the path to recovery. Your help and support will go a long way in supporting their long-term wellness.

If you or someone you love is suffering from a substance use disorder, High Focus Centers is here to help. Our team uses evidence-based treatment to help patients overcome addiction and minimize chances of relapse. Call our office at (877) 701-0682 or submit a contact form to learn more.