Even years after residential rehab, it is not uncommon for recovering addicts and alcoholics to experience drug or alcohol cravings.
These addiction cravings can range in intensity and are brought on by specific triggers. If not handled correctly, these drug cravings could lead to relapse.
What Are Triggers in Addiction?Relapse triggers, also known as addiction triggers or drug triggers, are stimuli that elicit a craving in a recovering addict or alcoholic for the substance or substances they used to abuse. Relapse triggers can be both internal and external stimuli, and some will lead to stronger cravings than others.
Common Addiction Relapse TriggersAddiction triggers are different for everyone and will depend on a variety of factors. Different types of abused drugs are associated with different paraphernalia and means of administration, so they can have distinct triggers. Also, the person’s environment and mental state when they were an addict will also play a large factor. Although everyone is unique, our drug detox center in Gilman has compiled an addiction triggers list of common stimuli to be aware of.
Addiction triggers can be internal, environmental, and situational. Some common relapse triggers to be aware of include:
- Mental health problems
- Feeling stressed or overwhelmed
- Drug paraphernalia
- Party environments like bars, clubs, or music festivals
- Traumatic or difficult life events
- Places where the recovering addict used to abuse drugs or alcohol
- People who the recovering addict used to get high or drunk with
- Drug dealers
- Doctors’ offices and doctors if they abused prescription drugs
- Media that mentions drugs or alcohol
How to Deal with Common Relapse TriggersAlthough this list is not extensive, awareness of these common addiction relapse triggers is only part of the solution. The next step is learning how to deal with addiction triggers. While it is easy to tell someone in recovery to just avoid these drug triggers, it is not realistic. There are ways to avoid situations and places where these relapse triggers are common, but unless you never leave your house, you are bound to run into some of these triggers at some point in your life. Everyone will have different solutions that work best for them, but it is important to practice the techniques you learned in your addiction therapies and to stay diligent.
If a relapse occurs, it is okay. Relapse is a part of the recovery journey for many, but it is important not to let this slip-up end your sobriety story forever. Whether you’ve had a recent relapse or you’ve yet to get help, there is hope.