What do you do after Drug Rehabilitation?
The public opinion of drug rehabilitation is that it can fix someone who is struggling with addictions and that 1-3 month stay in rehab is all that is needed to do so. However, addiction is a chronic condition, one that requires continued maintenance to keep in remission. Rehabilitation provides the treatment, guidelines and the structure for doing this. So what does one do after drug rehab to help them stay clean and sober? What follows are some suggestions to help continue the foundation laid through alcohol or drug treatment and what a person can do to help their recovery effort.
First things first, keep in mind that relapse can and does happen. It especially has a high probability in those that do not continue to focus on their recovery. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to think that you are good to go after completing drug treatment, or that you can control your using. It still takes time and a great personal effort and sacrifice to stay clean, safe and healthy.
Personal Daily Effort
One of the effective pieces of a program that really isn't discussed as a part of treatment is the structure of that program. It teaches planning. It teaches responsibility. It also emphasizes the commitment to a daily effort for recovery. In a rehab program, you typically wake up at the same time each morning and likewise retire in the evening. There are daily requirements to accomplish. These things can seem superficial at first, but in the long run can teach the valuable life skill of daily responsibility and focus on what's important. It helps to put and keep one's recovery first. Some things you can do to keep a daily personal focus are to:
- Plan out your day
- Write in a journal
- Always eat 3 meals each day (ideally around the same time)
- Review the day's events before you go to bed
- Plan and prepare for tomorrow's events
Support and Community Programs
12-step and recovery oriented programs will introduce you to a community of recovering addicts. This will probably be Cocaine or Narcotics Anonymous. However, others have found a very strong recovery support by being in A.A. as well. After treatment is completed, the old adage is to attend 90 meetings in 90 days. This gets you involved in the community. It gets you a sponsor and forging new friendships with others in recovery. It provides a needed support for dealing with the struggles of early recovery and it provides a place where you can grow and serve in sobriety. Over time, you won't need meetings every day. You won’t need to check in with your sponsor on a nightly basis. The benefit you will find is the opportunity to serve others in need of support. By sharing your story you not only help them, but it strengthens your resolve as well. The Local Recovery page of our website provides links to local fellowships and communities in the U.S.
Take Time for Self-Care
Fear, anxiety and stress are dangerous emotions for those in early recovery. They can be triggers to relapse. By taking time to personally care for yourself and relax you can greatly reduce these emotions. Find wholesome and uplifting activities to help you in recovery. Find things that you love to do. Plan and take time to do these activities. It is perhaps the most important preventative measure for taking care of yourself, physically emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. One such positive activity that is often emphasized is exercise. It is physically rewarding to get out in some capacity and get in some exercise. You don’t necessarily need to train for a marathon, but find exercise activities you enjoy. They will reward you as you take the time to care for yourself. There are many suggestions for practicing self-care here are a few:
- Eating Right - 3 balanced meals a day
- Getting enough sleep
- Exercise / going for a jog (walk) / Yoga
- Do something fun or creative
- Read a Book
- Go to church
- Be involved in service
- Journal writing
- Meditation / Prayer
- Spend time with family
- Get out into the outdoors
Calling Cirque Lodge - For our alumni we want you to continue the recovery effort that you developed here in treatment. We also understand that recovery does take a time and effort. If you feel relapse could be a possibility, please call us here at the Lodge. We have in place a Guesting Privilege, free of charge, to allow you to return to treatment for 3-4 days. This can be a means to refocusing your efforts on recovery. Our ever developing alumni program is a means to staying connected to individuals and the facility through dinners and activities. And when a relapse does occur, by all means call our facility and let's get you on a 2-week Relapse Track or readmitted into treatment if needed.