Of the over 22 million illicit drug users in the country, 68.9% are employed part-time or full-time. As opioid and alcohol epidemics worsen nationwide, there are more and more employees needing addiction treatment in Stuart. At our Banyan rehab center, we support the full continum of rehab care. We understand that after completing our recovery programs, patients may have a difficult time readjusting to everyday working life with their newfound sobriety. With this in mind, we’re sharing some tips for going back to work after rehab that can help you or a loved one in this process.
From Rehab to Work: Tips for Returning to Work After Rehab
Individuals who require addiction treatment or ongoing care are protected by the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). In this circumstance, employers can’t take action against people because of work absences due to receiving addiction treatment.
As helpful as FMLA can be for rehab, it’s important to understand the boundaries of this act, including what it does and does not protect. For instance, the FMLA does not protect a person’s job if work absences are due to drug use itself. Additionally, in cases when a workplace has a clearly stated policy that substance abuse can result in termination, the FMLA does not apply.
However, your employer cannot fire you because you sought out addiction treatment, meaning you can undergo care. This means that you can return to work after going to rehab. If this sounds like you, below are some tips on going back to work after rehab that can make the transition smoother.
Be Honest With Everyone
Denying your addiction and your recovery will dishonor all the hard work you’ve done to get sober. Make sure to be honest with yourself, and with others, about your recovery. Don’t lie about your journey after completing treatment and returning to work. You don’t have to give all the personal details, but you don’t need to lie about your recovery. Your honesty may even inspire others to work towards their sobriety.
Have a Plan for Facing Stress
Returning to work after drug rehab can be highly stressful. Not only can the transition to a sober lifestyle cause a strain, but adding the business of a work schedule can make things more difficult. Make sure to have a plan for how you’ll cope with stress.
This can include breathing exercises, meditation, and support systems. Controlling your responses to stress won’t just solidify your sobriety, but it will also help improve your workplace performance. Our Banyan Stuart rehab center also offers an alumni program that provides clients with ongoing counseling and support after completing treatment to help them in their transition to a sober lifestyle.
Discuss the Transition With Your Employer
You and your employer can create a smooth work transition plan that fits your specific situation. For this reason, it’s important to be honest with your employer and keep them in the loop when it comes to your progress. Not only will they want to know for the sake of the company, but also because they’re genuinely interested in seeing their employee improve their life.
Beware of Burnout
Burnout refers to a combination of physical, emotional, and psychological exhaustion. Recovering from an addiction increases the likelihood of exhaustion, which can increase the risk of a burnout-related relapse.
You’ve just established your healthy habits, so they’re not stable yet. You might also find yourself replacing an addiction to drugs or alcohol with an addiction to work. At this early stage in recovery, it’s important to practice self-care and prioritize a healthy diet, daily exercise, and time outside.
Get Support From Trusted People
Support can go a long way in the trajectory of your recovery. After completing addiction treatment in Stuart, make sure to build a support system at home as well. This includes a sponsor, alumni from your recovery program, AA, and NA. Count on your support system as you transition back into everyday life, with your newfound sobriety.
Coming home from rehab doesn’t have to be difficult. We hope that these tips make it easier to transition back into everyday working life following the completion of drug and alcohol treatment.