Relapse prevention is a strategy for how a person can manage their ‘triggers’ for substance use. These can be anything from stress to social outings to certain friends or family. The more support you can provide, the more likely it is a parent will be able to maintain their goals and keep their children safe.
Check in on parents once they have finished their program. Learn from them and their service providers what is recommended and how you can best support recovery.
Tips for supporting recovery
Being active in the community and using peer support groups and activities are important predictors of recovery.
Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous or SMART Recovery are self-help groups that represent the most accessible form of peer and community support and are often available even in areas where other treatment options are lacking.
To find local meetings in your area go to:
Relapse is an opportunity—not the end
Problematic alcohol and other drug (AOD) use is a chronic and relapsing condition and it may take some attempts before a parent is able to maintain their goal of recovery.
A lapse can be useful for a parent if they are able to learn from the situation and then put preventative strategies in place to reduce the chances of it happening again. If a person lapses and re-commences problematic use, then this is a relapse.
Your role will always be to keep connected with what lapse and relapse means for a child, to look at ways to make sure the child is safe, and to determine what steps need to be taken.
For more detail about responding to relapse, go to: Alcohol and Drug Foundation—What is relapse?
Building a partnership with alcohol and drug servicesNext
How to involve children in case planning
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