What Every Family Needs To Know About Relapse

No matter what anyone says, there is absolutely no way to keep a person sober if the person has made up their mind that they want to get drunk or use drugs. There are treatment facilities that do a good job at shielding a person from drugs and alcohol by their location, limited freedom, and 24 hour supervision, but even then, people in treatment who want to drink or use drugs will inevitably find a way to do so. Alcoholics and addicts will go to great lengths to find some way to get high even in the most restrictive of environments. The best example of this is prison. Prisons are the most monitored and secured places in the world, and yet inmates have created ingenious ways to smuggle drugs into prisons and make their own alcohol from any kind of fruit they can get their hands on. This is often the problem with inpatient, lock down, alcohol and addiction treatment facilities. Though clients in a remote drug and alcohol treatment facility may go 30 days or more without using drugs or drinking, the moment they are given their freedom and return to the outside environment, the first thing they do is find alcohol and/or drugs. The problem with this relapse scenario is that now the person is outside of the realm of treatment and could go on using and drinking indefinitely. In residential and extended care treatment, clients are living in the “outside environment” so to speak, and when relapse occurs, as it will from time to time, the residential or extended care alcohol and addiction treatment facility will be able to catch it immediately and take the necessary action to stop the disease in its tracks. In residential and extended care treatment facilities relapse will sometimes occur, but experienced treatment professionals will be able to process the relapse with the client, take preventative measures to keep it from reoccurring, and use the relapse to further the client’s treatment. Remember, absolutely nothing can physically prevent an alcoholic or addict from relapsing if they have their mind set on using drugs or drinking. The alcoholic and/or addict is a strong willed and creative individual. Even if you were to put an alcoholic or addict on a deserted island for treatment, they would find a way to drink and use drugs if they want to and no human power would be able to prevent it from happening. Just remember that relapse is often, but not always, a part of the recovery process. Sometimes relapse is the most effective treatment tool there is, because it helps the addict and/or alcoholic breakdown the denial surrounding their disease. In the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous it suggests that if someone doubts that they are an alcoholic, they should try some controlled drinking, keeping in mind everything they know about alcoholism. What inevitably happens is that the alcoholic who attempts to control their drinking will fail miserably and their failure will usher in the “bottom” they need to hit before they can truly recovery. This does not mean that every alcoholic and addict needs to hit “bottom” before they recovery, because in addiction and alcohol treatment, one of the main goals is to help the client “raise their bottom” by helping them see how their drinking and using drugs has negatively effected their life. Some people relapse many, many times before they are broken-down enough to realize they need the help that is available to them in treatment. Of course their are other that enter treatment and never drink or use drugs again, but this is a rarity. At NTS Treatment Centers we recognize that relapse can be used to help a person recover. We do everything we can to prevent relapse, but when relapse does occur, we are quick to capitalize on it and use it for the betterment of the client’s recovery. If relapse becomes an issue, and the client cannot handle the freedom of our extended care treatment program, we will move the client back into our Phase One, Joshua House program and a higher level of care. NTS offers all levels of addiction treatment, so clients can gradually experience more and more freedom, or more and more restrictions on their freedom. It all depends on the person and the stage of recovery they are at in their lives.

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