10 relapse triggers

10 Relapse Triggers

Like the drip, drip, drip of a leaky pipe before it blows, the onset of a relapse begins with small, nearly undetectable, signs. As anyone in recovery will tell you, the threat of relapse is ever present as the “monster” just lies in wait. As it is often referred to, addiction is a wily foe. It is stealthy and omnipresent, and seeks opportunities should you let your guard down.

While in treatment there is an important emphasis on relapse prevention planning. Clients are encouraged to give this assignment careful attention, and to do a thorough and introspective review of potential triggers. Many triggers are obvious, such as hanging out with people who use or drink or becoming over confident to the point of deluding yourself. But with so many possible triggers that can trip up the newly sober individual it bears reviewing here the most common 10 relapse triggers.

That Are the Most Common 10 Relapse Triggers?

Early recovery requires constant vigilance on behalf of the newly sober individual. The addict brain is cunning and will continue to try to convince you to return to using. Being aware of the traps is intrinsic to overcoming the lure when the wrong path beckons. The 10 relapse triggers that most often befall the recovering addict or alcoholic include the following:

  1. Boredom. Too much down time can allow the mind to conjure up ideas and thoughts about using drugs or alcohol in order to relieve boredom. Just being still and alone with oneself if sometimes very difficult in early recovery, tempting some to return to the substance.
  2. Loneliness. Cutting old friends loose in recovery can result in feelings of loneliness. Loneliness is a very powerful emotion that can quickly lead to romancing the substance again, using it as substitution for a human relationship.
  3. Stress. In many cases, abusing drugs or alcohol was initially used as a coping tool for managing stress, so navigating stress in recovery without the crutch can be challenging. Work and family stress can overpower someone in recovery, leading to a relapse.
  4. Mental health disorder. An untreated or undiagnosed mental health condition, such as depression or anxiety, can be very triggering. Many with a mood disorder or anxiety used alcohol or drugs to self-medicate, or mask the difficult symptoms.
  5. Glamorizing addiction. After a certain period of sobriety it is common for those in recovery to begin playing head games with themselves, romancing their time as an addict and pining away for those freewheeling days.
  6. Social connections. Continuing to hang out with friends or acquaintances that party and do not support your recovery will eventually trigger a relapse.
  7. Dating. A.A. recommends that someone in early recovery wait a year before initiating a new relationship. Romantic strife or a breakup can trigger deep emotions that may trigger a relapse.
  8. Overconfidence. Many a recovering addict has fallen victim to overconfidence. After a year or so it may seem entirely reasonable that you can handle having just one drink at an event, resulting in a weeklong bender that ends with a readmit to rehab.
  9. Stop working the program. Recovery is hard work. It requires your constant attention and a lot of self-discipline. Some may grow weary from this and begin to skip meetings or continue nurturing sober friendships and connections, and that can leave the person vulnerable to relapse.
  10. Guilt and shame. In recovery, many may feel the full effect of the damage done and harm caused while in active addiction. The feelings of guilt and low self-esteem around these realizations can lead the person to believe there is no point in remaining sober.

Addiction is a complex disease. The triggers that could send one person careening toward relapse may not affect another at all. Knowing your own particular weaknesses and vulnerabilities and humbly seeking support when it becomes clear that the “pipe is springing leaks” and is about to burst. Call someone. Go to a meeting. Distract yourself with a project. Do not let the wily one win.

Ken Seeley Communities is a Full Service Addiction Program in Palm Springs

Ken Seeley Communities provides a wide range of addiction treatment services, including intervention services, medical detox, outpatient programming, residential rehab, and sober living housing. Our continuing care services can help the newly sober client confront the 10 relapse triggers mentioned above and reinforce relapse prevention. Ken Seeley has a long career in the field of addiction recovery, and is well known for his appearances on A&E’s Intervention series.

Nestled in a beautiful and serene desert setting in Palm Springs, California, Ken Seeley Communities offers an effective blend of evidence-based psychotherapies, complimentary holistic therapies, and a sense of community that helps foster a new healthy life in recovery. For more information about our spectrum of services, please reach out to Ken Seeley Communities today at (877) 744-0502.

stages of withdrawal from Norco

Stages of Withdrawal From Norco

No one enjoys suffering from pain of any kind. So when a doctor prescribes a pain reliever, such as Norco (hydrocodone) following a serious injury or a surgical procedure, it is usually welcomed with open arms. Although the majority of patients might be able to take the opioid medication for a week or so with no trouble discontinuing use when pain symptoms subside, others may already be addicted to the drug. Norco addiction sneaks up silently, with little or no warning that a problem is developing at first.

The first sign that there is an issue comes when the prescription runs out and you experience signs of withdrawal. These physical and psychological symptoms indicate that the brain has already altered its neurotransmitters in anticipation of ongoing Norco dosing. When the drug is suddenly discontinued, individuals who have developed a dependency to the drug will feel sick.

What happens next is what can be the blueprint for a serious drug addiction to develop. If the individual just toughs out a day or two of feeling punk, similar to the flu, following a few weeks of Norco use, they will likely be just fine. Their body will readjust to normalcy soon and all is good. However, many people experience those withdrawal symptoms and immediately request a refill of the drug. Some doctors will accommodate the request, thus deepening the dependency, while others will offer them alternative pain relieving measures.

Again, patients who accept the advice of the doctor and access alternatives to opioids will usually have little problem pushing through a week or so of feeling lousy. Others will be bound and determined to locate the drugs elsewhere.

Signs of Norco Addiction

When these individuals are refused additional prescriptions by their doctor, they may seek other means of finding the drugs. These include:

  • Doctor shopping for a physician or pain clinic that will prescribe more Norcos
  • Stealing the drugs from friends or relatives medicine cabinets
  • Using counterfeit prescription pads to create a prescription for the drug
  • Purchasing Norcos off the Internet
  • Purchasing Norcos from drug dealers on the street

In addition to the drug-seeking behaviors that indicate addiction, those who have developed an addiction or dependency may also exhibit these signs:

  • Constricted pupils
  • Constipation
  • Mental confusion
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Nodding off or losing consciousness
  • Slowed breathing
  • Isolating from friends and family
  • Becoming obsessed with obtaining the drug and taking the drug
  • Declining work or school performance
  • Mounting financial problems
  • Problems with relationships
  • Attempting to quit the Norco but unable to
  • Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when drug not available

Getting Help For a Norco Addiction

When the signs of addiction are recognized, there are recovery options for individuals seeking treatment. The first step in recovery will be detoxification, the period in which the body adjusts to not having the drug any longer. Detox will include three stages of withdrawal, with symptoms peaking on days 2 or 3, before beginning to subside.

The stages of withdrawal from Norco begin with symptoms emerging about 6-12 hours after the last dose. Early mild flu-like symptoms evolve into more intensified and highly unpleasant symptoms about halfway through the detox process, and then gradually begin to subside.

Withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive yawning
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Goosebumps
  • Muscles and bone pain
  • Insomnia
  • Teary eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Problems with concentration
  • Irritability
  • Agitation
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Fatigue
  • Drug cravings
  • Mood swings
  • Anxiety symptoms
  • Headache
  • Depression, malaise
  • Thoughts of suicide

Although these symptoms are difficult to endure, the detox specialists overseeing the process will be constantly monitoring the progression through the stages of withdrawal from Norco, and will provide medications to help minimize pain and discomfort.

Moving Forward in Recovery

Once the stages of withdrawal from Norco are completed, it is time for the individual to enter the treatment phase of recovery. Treating hydrocodone addiction is the same as treating other opioid addictions, as the drugs have similar effects on the brain. A comprehensive program will include individual therapy sessions, group therapy, medication-assisted treatment, relapse prevention planning, addiction education, family focused therapy, and activities that compliment the traditional evidence-based therapies.

Ken Seeley Communities Provides Treatment for Norco Addiction

Ken Seeley Communities and Rehab is a full service addiction recovery program in Palm Springs, California. Covering all aspects of treatment for hydrocodone addiction, Ken Seeley offers a medically supervised detox program that will help manage the various stages of withdrawal for Norco prior to initiating treatment. We follow up with options for treatment, including intensive outpatient programs, partial hospitalization programming, and residential rehab. For individuals selecting an outpatient option, sober living housing is also available at Ken Seeley Communities. For more details about our program, please reach out to Ken Seeley Communities today at (877) 744-0502.