How to Control Your Environment to Avoid Relapse

How to Control Your Environment to Avoid Relapse

Avoiding relapse and maintaining sobriety is a considerably challenging part of addiction recovery. After all, as difficult as it is to go through detox, this process is usually conducted in the secure, supportive environment of rehab, in which it is impossible to obtain or use drugs. However, upon leaving rehab recovering addicts will face familiar stresses that led to substance abuse in the first place. In addition, they will encounter opportunities to relapse, like old friends who still drink or use drugs may visit, neighborhood bars may beckon and residual elements of former drug using days may linger in the home. All of these elements can threaten recovery, so recovering addicts must avoid relapse triggers and make their environments as safe as possible.

How to Protect a Home against Relapse

Controlling the home is probably the easiest aspect of relapse prevention. Strategies for controlling the home to create a drug-free environment include the following suggestions:

  • Make sure that there are no drugs or drug paraphernalia in the house
  • Make the home a clean and relaxing place to be
  • Stock the house with activities to entertain yourself to keep your mind off drugs, like movies, books, puzzles or models
  • Take up cooking and treat yourself regularly to good meals
  • Invite non-drug using friends over to socialize

You can protect your sobriety if you start with making a drug-free home.

How to Avoid Relapse in the Real World

No matter how secure you make your home, at some point you will have to venture outside it. Your options for controlling your exterior environment are far more limited than for controlling your household, so rather than failing to control others, focus on avoiding risky situations that may threaten your recovery. Consider the following suggestions for venturing into the outside world:

  • First and foremost, stay in regular contact with your support network
  • Attend support group meetings without fail
  • Take advantage of any follow-up treatment offered by your rehab center
  • Avoid places like your dealer’s neighborhood or your former favorite bar that tempt you to indulge your addiction even once
  • Remind yourself that there is no such thing as just one use
  • Without dwelling on the mistakes of the past, remember all the reasons you needed to get sober
  • Stay in regular contact with your sponsor(s), especially in weaker moments
  • Remember that relapse does not mean failure; recommit to sobriety and reenter treatment if necessary.

With the right help you can avoid or overcome relapse.

Support for Continued Recovery

If you are in recovery and need help finding support, please call our toll-free helpline today. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to help you find the support you need, so give us a try and safeguard your recovery.