Aftercare Keeps Recovering Patients Motivated to Stay Sober
The Benefits of Positive Environments
The road to recovery does not end once a treatment program is completed; remaining sober is a lifelong journey that takes hard work and dedication. Treatment facilities understand the difficulties recovering patients will face; therefore, they guide them toward effective aftercare programs. Aftercare keeps recovering patients motivated to remain sober through positive environments as well as positive distractions.
Effective Aftercare Programs
During treatment, patients will participate in group and family therapy sessions. These therapies are designed to help build a large network of support which is extremely necessary for after treatment. Group therapy sessions allow other recovering patients to share their experiences with each other in order to develop bonds and close relationships with those who are going through similar things. These friendships can develop during treatment and may last a lifetime.
Alumni and Friends
The friends made during treatment will always play a big part in recovery and maintaining sobriety. They know what each other have been through and can offer guidance and support during tough times. Additionally, alumni, who are successful recovery patients, can also play a big part in maintaining sobriety. Like recently recovered patients, alumni are patients who have completed a successful recovery program and remain in contact with the facility in order to provide guidance and support for recently recovered patients. Like the friends made during recovery, alumni know exactly what each patient has gone through and can offer even better advice than newly recovered patients because they have experienced recovery longer.
Those in recovery have a chance at becoming an alumni if they maintain their sobriety and prove that addiction treatment is effective. Becoming an alumni means they have utilized the tools they learned during treatment and have become a functioning member of society who helps build other people up. Becoming part of the community through volunteering is a big part of becoming an alumni. Alumni should be positive, helpful and encourage others to become better than they already are.
Chapters and Meetings
Chapters and meetings are even more beneficial than alumni and friends because it is an entire club based upon supporting and providing guidance for all types of people in recovery. Chapters and meetings, such as Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous provide a positive environment for all people in recovery or seeking recovery to come and share the experiences at. They also provide a helpful guideline that all recovering addicts should live their lives by, which include the 12-step program. The 12-step program is a guide for those in recovery to follow in order to maintain their sobriety.
Behavioral Health Resources
In some cases, the addiction may not be to substances but to certain behaviors, such as gambling, shopping or exercise. These addictions may not benefit from chapters and meetings like Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous; therefore, it is important to find behavioral health resources that will keep these individuals committed to their recovery. These types of resources include meeting with a therapist every once in awhile or finding positive distractions, such as volunteering.
There are also meetings, such as Gamblers Anonymous and Sex Addicts Anonymous. These aftercare programs significantly increase the chance of a successful recovery and help keep patients motivated to maintain their sobriety or behavioral health. In order to become in involved in aftercare programs, treatment facilities help their patients plan for life outside of treatment.
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Planning for Aftercare
It is important for patients to make a list of goals. They must also list how they plan on achieving those goals. The list of goals is great, but if there is no plan to achieve them, it is completely useless.The next step is to immerse themselves in positive daily activities. The goal is to become distracted with positive things, people and environments in order to drown out negative thoughts, actions and behaviors.
It is also recommended for patients to track their progress or if they have felt any changes. It is important to notice when things are not right in order to figure out exactly what it is that is causing the new feelings. Which leads to the last step in the plan; identifying triggers. By tracking their progress or changes in mental state, patients should be able to identify the triggers that make them feel negatively.
Aftercare is one of the most important steps in a successful recovery and something that all recovering patients should immerse themselves in.