The doors open and after thirty days in a treatment center, away from family, work and life it is no wonder most patients simply want to get on with life in sobriety.
Patients longing to begin a fresh start. But many begin in the unreliable pink cloud of recovery.
But there is another cloud waiting for him or her. One that is hard to see – it is dark and all encompassing, this cloud that will sneak up on a freshly sober person like a winter snowfall in a Minnesota spring.
This cloud is called relapse.
And relapse is common after leaving treatment.
Study after study shows the first ninety days in recovery are when the greatest percentage of relapses occur. This is because drugs of abuse rewire the brain, and it takes a significant amount of time away from drugs to repair and/or overcome this rewiring.”– Psychology Today
It doesn’t have to be this way.
We find that setting up a comprehensive after-care program for each patient, tailored to one’s individual needs is crucial. We want to set our patients up for greater success when they walk out of our door, than just simply returning to life.
Here is the five-prong approach we use at Beauttere to set patients up for success:
- Individual therapy – Many times patients only begin to scratch the surface of therapy in a treatment center. Sometimes patients uncover repressed trauma that needs addressing through a trained trauma therapists who can further continue the work. We strive to place patients with therapists that directly meet the needs of each patient.
- Peer-to-peer support – This can be through AA or alternative group therapies (like an intensive outpatient program) that work best for each patient. We find peer support groups are effective for accountability, support, and ongoing issues that inevitably arise in recovery. Click here for resources.
- Sponsor or recovery coach – A sponsor can be the key for many in avoiding a relapse. “Some of the finest friendships have developed from this idea of sponsorship and most alcoholics, who are recovering, find a sponsor an important part of the process.” – Hazelden Betty Ford A recovery coach is a guide with training to coach patients who want to live their lives in long-term recovery. The benefits of having these guides are endless. Learn more about recovery coaching here. Check out a local Recovery Coach Academy.
- Sober housing – The more time a patient can spend surrounded in a supportive environment the better. Sober housing is the best way to do this! Click here or here for more information on sober homes.
- Psychiatrist – If medication management is part of the treatment plan, then ongoing appointments with a psychiatrist are imperative to the overall health and well-being of the patient in recovery. Beauterre makes psychiatry an integral part of treatment if a patient needs this service and makes sure to set patients up to continue this upon discharge.
Life after recovery is achievable. But making the necessary arrangements to procure the best chance at recovery possible includes forethought and aftercare planning that includes at minimum these aforementioned five crucial supports for the addict.
With all of these in place, we believe patients can feel supported and have a community one can turn to when the urges run high.
At Beauterre we are here to make sure these five keys are securely in place!
Click here to access Minnesota resources.
*Images from Unsplash