What to Expect in Addiction Recovery

What to Expect in Addiction Recovery

Here is everything you need to know about entering a drug or alcohol treatment program.

It takes tremendous effort to overcome an addiction to alcohol or drugs. While the recovery journey can include many challenges, the road to wellness is worth the struggle. As you begin the recovery process, it can help to understand what to expect during each phase of addiction recovery. No two recovery journeys are exactly alike, but there are usually some similarities in how people experience detox, addiction treatment, aftercare, and the first year post-rehab. Discovery Point Retreat offers a caring environment with experienced and encouraging staff. We can help you develop the strategies you need to achieve your sober-living goals and break the cycle of addiction. 

Addiction Recovery: What to Expect During Detox

The first stage in the rehab process is typically medical detox. Medical caregivers will slowly and carefully wean you from the substance you’re addicted to. During detox, many people will experience some unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. However, when you undergo detox at rehab or in a medical facility, caregivers can provide medications and other treatments to greatly reduce these symptoms, helping you feel as comfortable as possible as your body overcomes its physical dependency on drugs or alcohol.

Withdrawal symptoms may range in intensity from mild to severe. While there’s no telling how you will feel during this phase, much will depend on your body’s own chemistry and the length of time you’ve been addicted. Also, the drug in question is likely to be associated with certain types of symptoms. For instance, opioid withdrawal can cause a range of flu-like symptoms like aches, chills, and nausea. Other common withdrawal symptoms that people may experience during medical detox are:

  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Reduced appetite
  • Muscle ache
  • Dizziness
  • Intense cravings

Medical detox can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. You should note an improvement in how you feel as time progresses. As always, our staff will work to make you feel as comfortable as possible.

What to Expect after Medical Detox

When detox is complete, you’ll be ready for the next phase of treatment. Detox only targets the physical dependency of addiction. You need to address substance addiction’s psychological and behavioral aspects to overcome them. During the post-detox phase, you’ll likely participate in both traditional and holistic treatments that include individual counseling, group sessions, and even life-skills training. Therapists will help you develop strategies for preventing relapse from occurring once you leave rehab. You can also expect to:

  • Learn how drugs and alcohol affect your physical and mental health
  • Identify/discuss the triggers that caused you to abuse drugs or alcohol
  • Learn about the stages of relapse and how to prevent them
  • Identify risky social situations 
  • Learn how to cope with your triggers and cravings
  • Identify positive resources and support for recovery

This portion of the addiction recovery process can be emotionally draining. You may still be experiencing some lingering physical effects from detox. Even when you’re feeling down or unwell, remember that it’s part of the process. Do your best to participate fully and learn as much as you can. Studies have shown that when people participate in addiction treatment and fully engage in their recovery process, they’re less likely to experience relapse after leaving rehab.

What to Expect in the First Year of  Addiction Recovery

When you leave your addiction treatment center and return to your life, it’s time to practice the strategies you learned to manage your triggers and prevent relapse. This can be a challenging time. You may have left rehab feeling like a different person only to discover the same old triggers (i.e. stressful job, toxic relationships) ready to ambush you. This is why attending aftercare is so important. You can get ongoing support as you navigate the challenges associated with post-rehab living. With support, you can continue to practice making positive and healthy lifestyle choices and ward off relapse even during the most trying periods. 

The recovery process doesn’t always adhere to calendar dates. You may experience relapse triggers two or even five years down the road. Many medical experts say that addiction cannot be cured; it can only be managed. With this in mind, there’s no telling when you might experience challenges that threaten to derail your recovery. By entering treatment at Discovery Point Retreat, you’ll be better equipped to manage these challenges in healthy ways and maintain your commitment to sober living. Contact us at 855-306-8054 so we can start your recovery journey together right away.

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