The Process: Exploring the Various Stages of Addiction Recovery
The process of recovery from substance abuse is a long one. It takes time to get past an addiction problem. Remember that addiction problems don’t occur right away. They develop over a period of time. Likewise, recovery doesn’t happen overnight; there are multiple stages of addiction recovery. So, patience is an important part of the recovery process. While you or your loved one is going through treatment for drug or alcohol misuse, keep in mind that the stages of addiction recovery are all part of the journey. As you become more aware of them, you may be able to better understand the challenges and victories that all combine to make the process what it is. There are five main stages of addiction recovery.
The First Two Stages of Addiction Recovery
The first stage involves awareness and acknowledgment. During this phase of recovery, the individual recognizes that he or she has an addiction problem. Through conversations with concerned loved ones and close friends, the person may begin to understand that there’s a problem. This awareness is the first step in the stages of addiction recovery. But, it doesn’t end there. Even though the person may be aware of the problem, he or she may not immediately act on this knowledge. The individual might even continue to misuse drugs or alcohol. But the second part of this stage is acknowledgment. This happens when the person becomes aware of the problem and acknowledges his or her need for change. In other words, this first phase of recovery is not just about knowing that there is an addiction problem. It’s also about concluding that the person needs and wants help.
The second phase is usually called the stage of “Consideration”. It’s literally the next step from acknowledgment. This phase involves education about addiction. During this stage, people begin to realize the problems that the addiction is causing. People in this stage will begin to see the effects of substance abuse in their own lives as well as in the lives of others around them. The person who is struggling with substance dependence may begin to learn more about what the addiction is doing to his or her body and mind. People in this phase might also begin to recognize the effects of addiction on their relationships with others.
The Next Stages of Recovery
Thirdly, there is the stage of exploration. People in this stage begin to explore recovery options. This basically means that the person starts to learn more about addiction and, perhaps, decides that it is time to seek professional help. Some might think that this phase of recovery might be considered the first stage that involves action. However, the first two stages of addiction recovery are also filled with active emotional and physical engagement.
“Early recovery” is the phrase that is used to describe the fourth stage. During this phase of recovery, people end drug or alcohol abuse and begin to learn about relapse prevention methods. They start to adopt healthier patterns and cognitive behaviors. People in early recovery also begin to gain more information about how to cope with the stress and anxiety that they might face during and after treatment.
Finally, the fifth stage of recovery is commitment. In this stage, the individual starts to actively work on maintaining sobriety. The person begins to live a life that is truly free from drug and alcohol addiction. People in recovery continue to work through this stage after addiction treatment.
Addiction Recovery at WRRC
At Wellness Retreat Recovery Center, we believe that complete recovery from addiction is possible for our clients. So, if you need help overcoming a substance problem, please contact us today.