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RECO Intensive
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Supporting a Loved One Through Recovery

Substance use disorder, more colloquially known as drug or alcohol addiction, is a serious mental health condition characterized by substance abuse that persists despite the clear negative consequences it is having on someone’s life.

But what many people don’t realize about substance use disorders is how significant an effect they can have on family members and other loved ones of someone suffering from addiction. And, as difficult as it can be to watch a loved one self-destruct with drugs and alcohol, it can also be difficult to support a loved one in recovery.

Yet, often, family members play an important role in the addiction recovery process, especially in its sensitive early stages. To learn more about how to support the recovery journey of a loved one without losing track of your own needs, as well as about how addiction treatment programs can facilitate a loved one’s recovery journey, you can take a look at the information below.

Five Ways That Friends And Family Members Can Support A Loved One in Recovery

Offer Your Social Support

Research has consistently found that a person with a supportive family is far more likely to be successful in long-term recovery from addiction and far less likely to experience relapse. Addiction can be an incredibly isolating disease, so having even one close relationship with someone who can offer encouragement to stay sober without condemnation of the person’s past drug abuse can be enormously beneficial to someone in early recovery.

You can offer emotional support in the form of positive time spent with your loved one, by making an effort to do meaningful activities with them and offering them words of encouragement and affirmations of their value to you.

Additionally, friends and family can also offer more practical and constructive support to a person in recovery from addiction to drugs or alcohol. For example, you can help the person to find a treatment provider, and help them to develop their career as they seek to reintegrate into society. You can also reduce stress on them by volunteering to help them with day-to-day tasks that the emotional demands of recovery or a significant amount of time spent in treatment may make difficult to keep up with.

Encourage Healthy Habits

One simple way that you can support a family member in recovery is by encouraging healthy habits as alternatives to abusing drugs and alcohol and by modeling them yourself. This can involve engaging your loved one in fun activities that have nothing to do with substance abuse or suggesting simple self-care practices like eating enough and getting enough exercise.

You can also help your loved one by helping them to avoid any negative influences that may tempt them to relapse, which are known in the addiction recovery community as “triggers.” Thus. supporting a loved one in recovery may mean not keeping alcoholic beverages in the house, or avoiding drinking while around a loved one who struggles with alcohol abuse.

You also may need to avoid social situations with any friends and other family members who may jeopardize your loved one’s recovery by encouraging substance use or being emotionally destabilizing, at least while you are with the person. You can also show your support by making an effort to educate others in your family about the complexity of addiction and the need to serve as a positive influence.

Educate Yourself About Substance Abuse

One important way you can support loved ones through their recovery process is by making an effort to stay informed about the nature of addiction, including with the help of your loved one’s treatment provider.

Many addiction treatment centers offer family therapy, which can help to educate family members about their loved ones as well as to address any negative effects that a loved one’s addiction has had on family dynamics and to work through any negative emotions that you may be holding about your loved one’s addiction. Families often find that participating in these treatment programs helps them to understand what their loved one is going through, and thus to serve loved ones as a source of support.

Learning about addiction can also help you to understand that recovery is a lifelong process, which may help you be more supportive if you are forced to deal with a loved one’s relapse. Educating yourself about the disease of addiction may help you to identify the red flags that a loved one may be headed towards relapse and make every effort to prevent it, and understand that relapse is a part of dealing which a complex and chronic disease rather than a moral failing.

Be Open To Support Groups

While you’re probably familiar with support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous, you may be less familiar with family support groups like Al Anon, which is a safe space for those who have a loved one in recovery or in active addiction to discuss the impact addiction is having on their own mental health.

Support groups like these can serve as an outlet for negative emotions and a way to make friends with others who have had similar experiences, as well as another source of information about addiction.

You can also be supportive by encouraging your loved ones in recovery to attend support groups themselves. This will help them to connect with other sober people, to connect to and stay engaged in the recovery community, and to have other outlets besides you and other family members that they can rely on to provide support for their recovery journey.

Set Healthy Boundaries

As important as it is to support your loved one in addiction recovery, you shouldn’t support your loved one at the expense of your own well-being. This may mean making an effort to set your own boundaries when it comes to dealing with a family member in recovery or who is still struggling with their addiction, or who is experiencing a relapse after some period of sobriety.

Though it may be difficult to set boundaries with your loved one, you will also not be able to support them in the long run if you run yourself so ragged trying to take care of them that you jeopardize your own mental or physical health. Simple self-care measures like getting enough sleep, eating properly, and taking time out of your daily life for relaxation and physical activity can go a long way when it comes to maintaining emotional equilibrium.

Unfortunately, in some cases, it may also be necessary to set boundaries with one of your loved ones for the sake of the safety of you and the rest of your family, and in no way should you feel ashamed or conflicted about having to do so.

Mental Health And Addiction Treatment At Reco Intensive

Reco Intensive is a South Florida treatment provider offering treatment options for those struggling with drug addiction or alcohol addiction, including those with co occurring disorders that may make the recovery process more complex.

Along with established forms of treatment like behavioral therapy, family therapy, support groups, and medication-assisted treatment, we also offer a variety of more holistic treatment options to support your loved one’s mental, physical, and spiritual healing. We are also willing to work with families who would like to confront a loved one about their need for treatment with our intervention services.

To learn more about these services, our treatment options, and how we can help you or a loved one to develop the cognitive skills and emotional intelligence that they need to succeed in recovery, feel free to call us anytime at 844.955.3042 or to contact us online anytime here. There’s no time like the present to help a loved one get back on the road to a better life or brighter future.

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