Across the country, thousands of teens use drugs and alcohol each day. Some people may begin to use substances in an effort to manage an underlying mental health condition. Conversely, some teens turn to drugs or alcohol when their friends or family members pressure them to do so. Regardless of the reason that you or a teen you know began using substances, it’s vital to understand the substance use triggers. Once you understand these triggers, you can learn to manage them in the future at a teen substance abuse treatment program.
If you have undergone a successful recovery, avoiding relapse is critical as you do not want to return to your troubled past. As such, you may want to focus on maintaining sobriety. Seeking assistance from the right people can help you overcome triggers of substance abuse. Emotional, environmental, and social circumstances can remind a former drug user of past experiences and create the need for support from the experts at Foothills at Red Oak Recovery. If your teen is battling triggers for addiction, contact our adolescent treatment center today at 866.300.5275.
What Are the Triggers of Substance Use?
Triggers cause an intense craving and make you engage in drug or alcohol use. External triggers can include objects, people, and places that provoke cravings for substance use. Individuals undergoing recovery can succeed by avoiding things that may evoke thoughts about drug use. Discipline is critical during this phase because you will need to fight random urges and triggers.
Images related to drugs and substances can arouse subconscious cues prompting you to revert to abuse without awareness.
Some places can be risky for former drug abusers because they act as reminders of what they used to do before deciding to quit. A memory connection may occur when you visit the areas you used to drink or abuse drugs, including bars, concerts, neighborhoods, and hotels.
To prevent relapse, use different routes where you will not meet with dealers and former friends who are still indulging in dangerous habits.
Objects surrounding your daily life can lead to drug and alcohol cravings. For example, if you were using spoons to consume heroin, the piece of cutlery can trigger those memories. Empty pill bottles, movies, magazines, and some paraphernalia are common triggers of substance use.
Several studies reveal that reformed substance abusers can revert to their old ways after exposure to objects related to drugs.
When you are unsure of your self-control, avoid situations that can force you to indulge in illicit drugs. People undergoing addiction treatment may find it challenging to attend celebrations and parties where alcohol is available. If such situations can contribute to your relapse, avoid going to stick to your goal of maintaining sobriety.
The people closest to you can trigger cravings, leading to a gradual relapse. Surrounding yourself with people who use substances or do not support your recovery journey can cause a relapse. Some people may even offer you drugs and alcohol. Influences can come from neighbors, spouses, family members, employers, co-workers, and drug dealers. These people may not know the dangers of exposing you to drugs and substances.
Internal triggers of substance use can be more difficult to avoid since they consist of emotions, thoughts, and feelings linked to the habit. When an internal trigger occurs, it may result in undesirable behaviors that can compromise your recovery journey. The cues can contribute to an intense urge for the substance you were using.
Be aware of emotions like anger, nervousness, irritation, anxiety, and depression. Furthermore, stress makes you more vulnerable to a relapse. While it may be impossible to avoid some circumstances, try to apply the skills learned in rehab to cope.
The Importance of a Relapse Prevention Plan
In most cases, it is not feasible to avoid all of your triggers. It’s often a wise decision to attend a treatment center that will help you develop a relapse prevention plan. This plan will help you recognize the symptoms that indicate that you might relapse. You can then follow your relapse prevention plan, which ideally can prevent a return to using drugs or alcohol. For instance, your relapse prevention plan may include:
- A list of people who you can turn to if you’re afraid you may relapse
- Physical lists containing your triggers and a reaction to these triggers that can prevent relapse
- A list detailing the disadvantages of using drugs or alcohol and the advantages of remaining sober
- A complete schedule of recovery group meetings that you commit to attending
- Steps you can take to make and maintain healthy habits
It’s vital to remember that relapse doesn’t mean that you’ve failed. Addiction is a chronic disease. In other words, it is a condition that you will have to manage for the rest of your life. However, with support and a relapse prevention plan, it is possible to overcome this disease.
Manage Your Teen’s Triggers at the Foothills at Red Oak
If your teen is battling their triggers, it’s important to realize that they’re not alone. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), an estimated 40% of individuals who complete a residential treatment program can relapse. Rehab centers provide a variety of services, including:
- Substance abuse treatment
- Co-occurring issues treatment
- Process addiction treatment
- Disordered eating treatment
- Anxiety disorder treatment
Substance use disorders affect millions of people in the US. Do not let addiction destroy your teen’s life; you can receive the much-needed help at the Foothills at Red Oak. Our experts can teach your teen how to cope with the triggers of substance use to ensure long-term sobriety. Contact Foothills at Red Oak today at 866.300.5275 to schedule an appointment.