There are many causes for recovering individuals return to use. The most common one reported is boredom. Although it is stressed in most addiction treatment programs the need to pursue a personally meaningful life, many still think that recovery is just detoxing, talk therapy and meetings, neglecting that there is much more to recovery than only taking these steps. Most clients reporting that their recovery plan was limited to eating healthy meals, exercising, seeing a counselor, attending community support meetings and other healthy activities relapse in 3 to 6 months, mainly because they failed to find what is meaningful and brings purpose to their lives.
Fear of taking personal responsibility can also be the cause for some individuals to return to use. Those struggling with addiction know that when they are in recovery they are expected to keep their promises to show up to work on time and perform their responsibilities. Not prepared for taking on these responsibilities some buckle under the overwhelming pressure and to do away with all these outside pressures they relapse, because in active addiction no one expects anything from them.
Perhaps the predominant cause, and in most cases not identified by recovering individuals, is undiagnosed and untreated underlying mental health conditions such as trauma, anxiety, and depression. In fact, in 2018 the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) reported that 19.3% (9.2 million individuals) of U.S. adults with a substance use disorder also experienced mental illness. People often abuse alcohol or drugs to ease the symptoms of an undiagnosed mental disorder to cope with difficult emotions or to temporarily change their mood. Unfortunately, abusing substances causes side effects that in the long run often is worse than the symptoms they initially helped to relieve.
There could be many more reasons to be listed here, but the fact is that addiction disrupts regions of the brain that are responsible for reward, motivation, learning, judgment and memory. This makes it very hard for individuals to be aware of the reality of their life and to find the path to get back to the normal life they once knew.
For those seeking treatment, it is critical to find rehab facilities that offer thorough medical and clinical assessment and individualized treatment. Established rehab facilities are well equipped to deliver therapies to address the multidimensional aspects of the disease of addiction while teaching personal accountability. Although attending a comprehensive addiction treatment program is one step in the series of the right steps that need to be taken to achieve lasting recovery, it is the most important step that can make a successful recovery possible.
There is much healing that must occur to correct the damage done by drugs and alcohol abuse. In addiction recovery, healing involves physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual aspects of life. In other words, isolating any of these aspects of our human existence will perpetuate the suffering.
If you or someone you love is using drugs or alcohol as an escape from life’s troubles, specialized professional treatment is available, and RECOVERY IS POSSIBLE. Make a call and talk to a professional about your situation.
For information regarding treatment for individuals struggling with addiction and related mental health conditions, contact us at (800) 851-3291. You may also visit our addiction treatment programs’ page for a better insight into our diverse comprehensive therapies.
Dr. Balta is the Medical Director at FCR for more than 10 years. Dr. Balta is Board Certified in Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine, Certified Psychoanalyst. As well, as having Psychiatric Training at The Albert Einstein School of Medicine Psychiatric Residency Program In New York City and Psychoanalytic Training at The William Alanson White Institute in New York City. While working in New York City, gained funding Grants for the treatment of Substance Abuse Disorders from SAMHSA , HRSA and the City of New York.