It always seems to happen when you are trying to do something important. All of sudden your phone or your computer or your tablet seems to slow to a crawl. Images won’t load, applications or programs crash or freeze, and no matter how many times you click on something nothing seems to happen. It is frustrating, to say the least.
After those first few frustrating moments, however, you might remember a pretty simple solution: restart that device. A restart will often resolve whatever issue has been bogging your device down and get it working the way you expect it to again.
The notion of a restart is applicable to your recovery journey, too—especially if that journey includes the detour known as a relapse.
Relapse is Always a Risk
In a perfect world, you would get treatment for a substance use disorder, emerge sober, and then remain sober for the rest of your life. Things really do work out that way for some people, but certainly not for everyone.
Because a substance use disorder is a treatable but incurable brain disease, the risk of relapse is always present. That, unfortunately, is true even if you are doing all you can to maintain your sobriety.
But that does not mean you should have a fatalistic attitude about your sobriety. You absolutely should put in the work to increase the chances that you can maintain your sobriety over time. (We have explored lots of examples of behaviors and choices that support ongoing sobriety throughout this blog.)
You should also have a plan in case you experience a relapse. That’s not defeatism at all. Instead, it is more like having a plan for when your devices start to malfunction. Having a plan in case things go awry is simply smart.
And how do you restart after a relapse? You go back to treatment.
Take Your Recovery From the Top
It might be tempting to see a relapse as proof that your time in treatment was wasted. But it wasn’t—and getting back into treatment is the most effective way to get back on track after a relapse.
That makes sense when you think about it. After all, the first time you went through treatment, you benefited from medically supervised detoxification (and a lack of access to drugs or alcohol). You learned sobriety strategies and found support in group and individual therapy sessions during rehabilitation (and maybe received treatment for a co-occurring mental health disorder like depression or anxiety). And you had access to ongoing support when your time in residential treatment came to an end. You left treatment sober and with hope for the future.
Each and every one of those benefits is still important after a relapse. You still need to get sober. You still need strategies and support. And you still need ongoing support. You will leave treatment sober and with hope for the future.
You will have accomplished a full restart.
It Might Happen More Than Once
Ideally, once you restarted a glitchy device, you would never have to do it again. But that generally is not the way of the world, right? The good news is that each time your device starts performing badly, you can restart and get a fresh start.
All of that is true of relapses, too. Ideally, once you had one and returned to treatment, you would never have to do it again. But sometimes people do have to do it again. The good news is that any time you experience a relapse, you can get a fresh start.
We, of course, have a place we would enthusiastically recommend whether you are seeking treatment for the first time or are in need of a restart for your recovery.
Bel Aire Recovery Center in Kansas is Here to Help
Our commitment at Bel Aire Recovery Center is to treat each person we serve as an individual worthy of respect and empathy. Each person’s needs are unique to them, so we design personalized treatment plans grounded in evidence-based practices, our extensive training and experience, and our collective expertise.
When you are struggling with drugs or alcohol, it can seem as though you are all alone and that there is no path that leads back to sobriety. Happily, neither of those things are true. At Bel Aire, we are here to help you regain and maintain your sobriety.