With no known cure for substance use disorder, those who suffer from alcohol and drug addiction find themselves at constant risk of relapse. In fact, national data indicates that relapse rates can range anywhere from 40% to 60% on average. When entering drug rehab King County patients will learn numerous relapse prevention techniques that can help prevent them from becoming a part of these statistics. One of the more common (and successful) relapse prevention strategies is known as the Four D’s of Relapse Prevention. The Four D’s are as follows.
Relapse Prevention Tip #1 – Delay
The Four D’s of Relapse Prevention begin with the easiest of the four relapse prevention strategies—wait it out. When an addict or alcoholic experiences the urge to use, the sensation often becomes overwhelming. They become restless and seek immediate relief. If they can put this off for even half an hour or so, the sensation will often die down. Addicts and alcoholics should know their relapse triggers well so that they know when to begin changing their thinking. This can prevent a trigger from developing into a true craving. Otherwise, they may need to continue down the list of available relapse prevention methods.
Relapse Prevention Tip #2 – Distract
Second on the list of relapse prevention strategies to employ is that of distraction. The Four D’s of Relapse Prevention complement one another quite well, as many will need to use this tactic in order to delay their craving in the first place. Calling a member of your support network, reading recovery-related literature, or even clicking on the television and gluing yourself to the couch can do the trick.
Even better, find a mentally or physically engaging activity to lose yourself in while you wait for the craving to pass. Giving yourself an activity or goal to pursue might not only distract you in the short-term, but possibly even cause you to forget that you had thought about relapsing in the first place. When looking for a quality drug rehab King County patients should look for a facility that offers more than just therapy, but also healthy distractions that can ease the process in ways that will teach this highly valuable tool.
Relapse Prevention Tip #3 – De-Stress
Note that the point of delaying and distracting is generally to reduce the stress caused by cravings. Deep breathing exercises make for excellent relapse prevention strategies in this regard. The Four D’s of Relapse Prevention may also incorporate holistic care techniques such as yoga and mindfulness meditation. By focusing on your breath, body and present-moment awareness in general, you draw attention away from the desire to use. These exercises also produce feelings of calm, which will keep you mentally stable until the urge to use passes.
Relapse Prevention Tip #4 – De-Catastrophize
Addicts and alcoholics engage in negative self-talk on a fairly regular basis. The Four D’s of Relapse Prevention account for this by reminding you that one craving does not constitute the end of the world. Some people experience the urge to use drugs and alcohol several years into their recovery. You may feel like these urges mean that you have somehow failed in your recovery program, but you must work to challenge these thoughts.
This is sometimes especially necessary for those in medical detox programs, as they will contemplate leaving treatment and getting high to overcome their withdrawals. Remember that nothing lasts forever, including your cravings.
Relapse Prevention in Drug Rehab King County
Aspire Health Network offers relapse prevention therapy that will help addicts and alcoholics achieve long-term sobriety. The Four D’s of Relapse Prevention factor into the wide array of relapse prevention strategies taught at treatment facilities such as Aspire Washington, a drug rehab King County residents can trust. Clients will learn the best relapse prevention techniques for their own recovery through individual and group sessions, practicing these methods in the context of therapeutic activities such as holistic treatment, outside meetings and recreational outings.
By the time they leave, our patients will know which relapse prevention methods work for them and how to incorporate these methods into a daily program of action. If you or someone you care about needs a program that can offer long-term reprieve from substance use disorder, contact us for more information today.