When a person becomes addicted to a substance, the brain learns to rewire itself to crave that substance. This can become tricky for an addict who has made the choice to get clean. Many situations may trigger the brain to seek the substance again; therefore, it is imperative for the recovering addict to be aware of these triggers.
What Are Common Addiction Triggers?
There are many triggers that can make maintaining sobriety a challenge. Here are the most common triggers:
- Feelings of shame
- Negative feelings, i.e. the need to “escape” the situation
- Positive feelings, i.e the need to “celebrate” the situation
- Encounter with people who shared the addiction, i.e. friends, past partners, etc.
Stress is thought to be the number one trigger that causes a relapse. A recovering addict/alcoholic may feel compelled to “soothe themselves” when stressed by turning back to the substance.
There are a variety of techniques for recovering addicts/alcoholics to utilize if they should experience a trigger:
- Learning coping skills can assist with managing emotions when triggered
- Being aware of common triggers
- Counseling and Aftercare
- Learning techniques to relieve stress can reduce the risk of relapse
Whereas addiction does not ever “go away,” it is possible to manage triggers and other relapse risks throughout the course of one’s life. Although the brain alters itself to accommodate addiction, it can equally accommodate recovery and new coping behaviors. Seeking professional assistance can help your recovery process by teaching necessary coping skills, providing a safe place to recover, and offering the support you need as you heal.
Turning Point of Tampa’s goal is to always provide a safe environment and a solid foundation in 12-Step recovery, in tandem with quality individual therapy and groups. We have been offering Licensed Residential Treatment in Tampa since 1987.