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5 Steps to Take After Going Through a Detox Program

The path from addiction to recovery can be a long and arduous one. It’s critical to have the proper support as you navigate the process. Entering into a detox program can be a life-saving decision for you or someone you love. 

Detoxing alone is dangerous. A safe and successful recovery process requires medical supervision. A detox program can offer space and support to dismantle your addiction. It will also teach you skills you’ll need in the real world. 

But the journey doesn’t end there. Detoxing is one piece of the puzzle known as addiction treatment. After your program, you will need some form of follow-up treatment or aftercare. You will also need to take certain steps to sustain your recovery and avoid relapse.

What Happens After a Detox Program?

The detox segment of a treatment program may last up to a week. After your supervised detox, you can proceed in some of the following ways:

  • Return to your home —You’re allowed to go home after your supervised detox, but medical professionals don’t recommend it. Between 40 and 60 percent of people in recovery will experience a relapse. The support you receive after a detox helps determine your outcome. 
  • Transition to a residential treatment center —A residential program is an option for recovery after your detox. These involve 24/7 care and intensive, evidence-based treatments in a homelike environment. They offer a gentler transition and set you up for success in maintaining sobriety.
  • Opt for partial hospitalization —These programs ease you back into your daily life after detox. You will attend treatment for the bulk of the day, five days a week, and return to your home for nights and weekends.
  • Use intensive outpatient treatment — You may wish to start rebuilding your routines right away. These programs allow you to live at home and return to work while attending treatment for generally three hours per day, three days a week.
  • Move into a sober living home —Many centers have the option of a sober living home that provides 24/7 access to care. These act as a transitional step between recovery and the real world.

Consistency is the key to successful recovery from addiction. Every individual’s treatment needs will be unique to them. Discuss your plan with your treatment team to establish what aftercare is best for you.

5 Steps to Take After Your Detox Program

Your stay in a treatment center may last for weeks or months, but it will come to an end. Your program should prepare you for discharge by providing resources you’ll need for continued success in the real world.

There are several steps you can take to continue your recovery at home without a relapse.

1. Build Your Support System

You’ll need to surround yourself with like-minded and supportive people. An official support group for addiction recovery can be a great starting point. Your treatment center likely offers support groups as part of their aftercare.

Beyond support groups, you'll need friends who understand what you’ve been through. Positive influences will help you continue your sobriety. You may have to distance yourself from friends or family members who are still grappling with their addiction, as difficult as that can be. 

Making new friends can be challenging, especially as an adult, but it can also be part of the healing process. Start with your support group or existing sober friends and branch out from there.

2. Optimize Your Environment

Where you live and how you feel about your home matter tremendously in your recovery. Living with roommates or family who enable your addiction can be a slippery slope. You may wish to seek an alternative housing situation, such as a sober living community or with people who will support you.

It can also be triggering to return to an environment where your addiction played a large role in your life. Observe how you feel about your home and whether living there is helpful or harmful to your recovery.

Moving can be a daunting undertaking, but it can provide you with the foundation you need to move forward in life.

3. Continue Your Treatment

Your treatment center will likely provide counseling for some time after your discharge. Therapy can help you build your confidence and self-reliance as you find your footing.

You may choose to continue psychotherapy as a regular part of your life. There are many different types of talk therapy that you can select from. You may wish to explore the various techniques until you find what’s best for you.

Common methods of psychotherapy used for addiction recovery include:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) —This involves a stress-relieving approach to trauma, mental illness, and other triggers. It helps you learn the reasons behind your stressors and how to react to them in a healthy way when they arise.
  • Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET) —This approach helps people who are ambivalent about their recovery. It aims to evoke internally-motivated change and develop positive coping mechanisms.
  • Matrix Model —This treatment method combines multiple approaches based on talk therapy. It involves relapse prevention and recovery skills, family therapy, and self-help participation.

A qualified counselor will be able to help create an appropriate treatment plan for you. The most important thing is to find a therapist you click with, which will encourage you to keep coming back over time.

4. Take Care of Yourself

You’ll need to care for your mental health with compassion and diligence during your recovery. This goes beyond attending therapy sessions. It includes at-home activities and staying attentive to how you’re feeling every day.

Meditation and mindfulness practices can decrease stress and overwhelm. You may also enjoy journaling or using mood-tracking apps to keep an eye on your mental health. 

Your physical health is equally important. A nutritious diet can heal deficiencies that may have resulted from your addiction. Exercising regularly can help boost your mood, which often slumps during recovery. Adequate sleep is also vital for regulating your mood and managing your stress.

If you find it difficult to focus on your self-care, using a habit tracker or a checklist can keep you on track daily.

5. Know the Signs of Relapse

Relapse is common during recovery and is nothing to be ashamed of. Knowing what signs to watch for can help you prevent it from happening.

The warning signs that a relapse is on the horizon may include:

  • A shift in priorities (deprioritizing or doubting recovery)
  • Recurrence of withdrawal symptoms
  • Behavior changes
  • Self-isolation from social activities
  • Abandonment of daily routine
  • Impulsive or reckless decisions

If you notice yourself exhibiting these symptoms, do your best to reach out to a trusted friend, a mentor/sponsor, or your therapist. You will need support to prevent a relapse, and asking for help is a skill necessary for your recovery.

Additional Tips for Maintaining Sobriety

Sustaining your recovery isn’t easy, but it is possible to heal from addiction and lead a full life. Some more helpful tips for maintaining your sobriety in your day-to-day life include: 

  • Keep yourself busy – The more engaged you are in the present moment, the more likely you are to succeed.
  • Pick up a new hobby or return to an old one – An activity you enjoy can give you a sense of purpose and distract you from the challenges of recovery.
  • Don’t miss an appointment – Commit to attending all your support group meetings, therapy sessions, etc. Show up for yourself. Create consistency. 
  • Be patient – Remember that recovery takes time. Forgive yourself when you make mistakes and remember that relapse is not a failure.
  • Celebrate milestones – Uplifting your successes will keep you motivated and moving forward.

These are some guideposts that may help you navigate your journey, but everyone’s recovery will look different. Find what’s most supportive for you and embrace it!

Get the Support You Need

If you’re ready to start your journey to recovery, we’re here to help you break the cycle. You deserve support and care as you embark on the path to healing. Jackson House offers many different treatment programs for your unique needs. Explore our programs now and reach out to discuss the best fit for you.

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