Handling Addiction Relapse Triggers Tips for Triggers

Failure to address and maintain these triggers during the recovery process only serves to increase the risk of relapse. Connecting with others who understand what you’re going through can provide the affirmation and reassurance necessary internal and external triggers to stay on track. Having a strong network of family and friends to turn to during difficult times can be invaluable. Mindfulness and meditation are two of the most effective coping strategies for managing addiction triggers.

  • Triggers are dangerous because they can increase the risk of relapse if not appropriately addressed.
  • They can also look different for each individual and could be a person, place, situation, or even an object.
  • By understanding your personal triggers, you gain invaluable insight into what may lead you down an unhealthy path again.
  • Because triggers are not always familiar and noticeable, it’s important for people in addiction recovery to be observant of what triggers them.
  • “An example might be a person with a substance use disorder who finds walking by a bar or smelling alcohol prompts cravings and thoughts of drinking,” he explains.
  • You may feel angry, guilty, or shameful about past choices, and these intrusive, negative thoughts can deter the recovery process.
  • Ask those you trust to help remove any triggers from your space, such as medication or alcohol bottles.

Mental Health And Addiction

It requires vigilance, resilience, and a commitment to ongoing self-improvement. But with the right support and resources, individuals can effectively navigate these challenges and continue on their path to recovery. Internal triggers, deeply intertwined with emotions and thoughts, play a crucial role in the process of recovery and the risk of relapse. These triggers often originate from within the individual and are closely related to their emotional state. Understanding and managing these triggers can significantly improve an individual’s recovery journey. A relapse trigger, whether internal or external, is something that sets off cravings in recovering individuals.

Have a Safety Plan in Place

This specialized attention can go a long way in helping people in recovery identify their triggers and learn how to prevent further addiction. Additionally, it is beneficial to set clear and healthy boundaries with individuals in your network who still use drugs or alcohol. Emotional triggers are emotional states that can lead to relapse in recovery.

  • This topic is especially important to recovery, as trauma and mental health struggles can be found at the root of many peoples’ substance use disorder.
  • The recovery journey can be a lonely one because you are addressing issues that other people around you may not need to address.
  • As a result of this increased awareness, your emotional reactions may feel more understandable, valid, predictable, and less out of control.
  • Internal triggers are experienced in the form of emotions and thoughts and can be difficult to cope with.
  • Understanding and managing these triggers can significantly improve an individual’s recovery journey.
  • People at risk of a relapse should avoid stressful situations that are likely to push them to use drugs and alcohol.

The Impact of Personal Experiences

If you’re ready to seek help, you can visit Psych Central’s guide to finding mental health support. While triggers can often tempt those in recovery to use substances, you can overcome them by learning to cope. Experiencing triggers can affect your emotional state and may increase the desire to use substances again.

Chronic Physical Health Conditions

internal and external triggers

Deciding to get treatment for substance use disorder can be a life-changing decision. External triggers are environmental events and situations that make you want to use drugs or drink alcohol. This can be anything from certain social situations, responsibilities, and even specific places that trigger your desire to use again. Everyone will have different internal triggers, but by recognizing some of the common ones you will be better equipped to avoid or address your internal triggers.

  • When you choose to get treatment at North Georgia Recovery Center, you can rest assured knowing that you will be treated by licensed therapists in our state-of-the-art facilities.
  • Internal triggers originate from within oneself, often linked to emotional factors.
  • And still others choose one of the treatments available to prevent further hair loss or restore growth.

While some people may not understand your actions, over time they will have to learn how to respect your choices. In rats and humans, the hormone corticosterone increases the level of dopamine, a brain chemical that plays a major role in reward-seeking behavior, in the brain in response to stress. The Marquette researchers stated a stressed animal previously exposed to cocaine will crave the drug because the dopamine surge from cocaine trumps the release of stress-related dopamine. A study of rats by the University of Michigan found that the rats largely preferred rewards that triggered the brain’s amygdala, part of the limbic system that produces emotions. The researchers also discovered that the rats were inclined to work harder to obtain the reward that triggered the amygdala than the same reward that did not trigger any emotion in the brain.

internal and external triggers

This includes identifying and addressing unresolved trauma or stress and changing negative thoughts and beliefs about oneself. Some triggers can be especially hard to face, but attempting to ignore them can lead to relapse and more pain. It can be difficult at first, and you’ll likely have some tough truths to face, but over time you’ll learn to show yourself some grace and compassion. In addition to being honest with yourself, you should strive to be honest with others. They can and do happen to everyone, no matter how long they have been on the path toward recovery, which is why a significant component of recovery is to handle each trigger as it comes. Burying your feelings or coping in a negative manner can increase your risk of relapse, while positive coping techniques can help you overcome any obstacles you may face.

Objects: Things That Can Trigger Relapse

While holidays are a time of celebration for some, they may be a struggle for people in recovery. Family and friends often tempt those in recovery to consume alcohol because they are under the misconception that one deviation from the treatment plan will not be detrimental. Others say trigger warnings can reinforce avoidance behaviors, which might only exacerbate PTSD in the long term. Instead, they argue that the emotions that arise from triggers should be appropriately dealt with in therapy, particularly if the feelings and resulting behaviors interfere with daily life. An internal trigger is something going on inside our minds or bodies that promotes the urge to relapse. Whereas external triggers are defined as people, places and things; internal triggers generally fall under hunger, anger, loneliness or fatigue.

internal and external triggers

Building Resilience for Relapse Prevention


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