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Sticking to Sobriety After Opioid Addiction

by Nick

After you finish opioid addiction treatment, it takes an ongoing effort to stay on the path to recovery. With the right strategies and support, you can improve your chances of success and know what to do if a relapse happens. Consider these approaches to staying sober after an opioid addiction.

Develop a Relapse Prevention Plan

When you reach stability in your opioid addiction treatment, consider creating a relapse prevention plan with your care team. Both patients who stay in treatment and those who discharge in their maintenance phase can benefit from this strategy. A comprehensive relapse prevention plan accounts for the following types of relapse factors:

  • Personal: What personal challenges will you face during recovery? How can you manage these obstacles?
  • Medical: Which providers can help you when recovery becomes difficult? How can you reach out to them?
  • Social: Which friends, family and loved ones will support you during your recovery? What can they do to help you?

Understand Your Triggers

Many people with opioid addiction have triggers — people, places and situations that cause urges to use opioids. By understanding what acts as a trigger for you, you can plan coping strategies in advance. Common triggers for opiate use include:

  • Reminders of past drug use such as paraphernalia, locations and people
  • Withdrawal symptoms
  • Stress
  • Mental health symptoms like depression and anxiety
  • Physical health problems
  • Reminders of past trauma

Build a Support Network

If you feel isolated in your life because of the effects of opioid addiction, you can build a new support network of the people you care about. Family counseling can help when opioid addiction strains your relationships with your family members. Consider your friends who support you without judgment. People in recovery who need to start a new social circle can also consider building relationships with their recovery peers.

Know Where to Go for Help

Consider making a list of the resources and people you can count on when recovery becomes difficult. Help during recovery goes beyond medical services — friends and family can also support you during these tough times. When you go through hard situations or withdrawal symptoms, you can check this list and reach out to someone who can help.

Take Care of Yourself

During opioid addiction, opiates become a replacement for your natural mechanisms for relaxation and positive feelings. Recovery involves finding healthy ways to reward your mind and body. Proper sleep, nutrition and exercise will help you feel better to discourage triggers for use.

Find a Peer Support Group

Outside of opioid addiction treatment centers, plenty of community support groups for people in recovery exist. Your clinic might know of groups in your area and how to join them. You can also search for social media groups and mobile apps that can help you find solidarity in recovery.

Get a Meaningful Hobby

An engaging hobby can distract your mind from opioids, provide new social connections and give new meaning to your life. Think about your interests and what you can do to nurture them.

Find Out More About Sobriety and Opioid Addiction

For support in your recovery or more information about opioid addiction treatment, contact Health Care Resource Center online or call us at 866-758-7769.

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