Triggers, Relapse & Prevention

Triggers for relapse are classified as environmental, re-exposure and stress triggers.  Stimuli that cause a neuro-chemical response that immediately induces cravings for alcohol or drugs that may lead to a relapse for someone in recovery.  Environmental triggers may correlate to an area where the individual used to drink or use, as well as loud noises and social events.  Re-Exposure triggers may include a particular circumstance or event that can reinstate alcohol or drug seeking behavior.  Stress triggers are the strongest type of relapse triggers for a recovering alcoholic or drug addict due to the high "seeking behavior" to "fix" the stressful situation.  Any stimuli the user associates with drug use can serve as a trigger for a relapse, including people, places and things.

Four Tips To Manage Triggers During Recovery From Addiction:

  1. Identifying Personal Triggers.

    Each individual has different triggers.  Common triggers are people, places and things that may set off, "drug or alcohol seeking behavior."  Such as walking by old hang-outs, talking or associating with people you may have used or drank with.  Even being bored can be a personal trigger.  

  2. Know How Serious Triggers Are:

    Triggers and cravings are a very real part of recovery. Thinking that they will not happen to you may be detrimental to your recovery. Instead, know your triggers, stay open to anything that may surprise you, and have a plan for when you feel yourself being triggered.

  3. Practice Your Trigger Plan.

    Role play, even just with yourself in the mirror, what you will do when you feel like using again. You may save yourself from a rough day, a temporary lapse, or a full relapse back to substance abuse.

  4. Taking An Active Approach Towards Wellness

    Triggers are more sustainable when eating and sleeping well are in play.  As well as exercising,  and being aware of your emotions.  H.A.L.T. (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired) are four things that are said to cause more lapses than relapses.  Identify when any of these four feelings occur, that is when you can take action.  Staying in action and not reaction keeps you in the drivers seat. 

Upon completion of treatment, the work begins with a commitment to abstain from alcohol and drugs.  Footprints of Serenity's Aftercare Services prepares clients for what the may face in their daily lives; in real life settings and situations.  Encountering cravings, triggers, and emotional distress are key factors that our team take full consideration of when assessing each individual client towards prosperity in recovery.  If you or a loved one would like more information or need assistance with Aftercare Services, please have no hesitation to call 213-80-SOBER (73267) or Request A Call.