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Sober Living

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Sober Living

Sober Living Communities are Key to Preventing Relapse

The environment in which a recovery addict is subject to has an immense impact on their ability to sustain long-lasting abstinence. Stable living environments such as sober living homes and recovery communities provide individuals recovering from substance abuse an encouraging environment that according to studies has a significant role in reducing relapse. Sober living houses provide individuals who are establishing and attempting to maintain sobriety with peer support, structure, and access to addiction recovery maintenance resources. There are numerous advantages to sober living environments on top of providing a safe and drug free environment. It is important that individuals in recovery and families of addicts understand the role of sober living homes and recognize that successful recovery from addiction relies heavily on long-term treatment as well as continuing care. With  rates of relapse for addicts, especially heroin addicts and dual diagnosis patients, being alarmingly high, taking advantage of effective treatment tools can minimize risks and maximize treatment outcomes.

 Substance use disorder and addiction can affect nearly anyone regardless of class, race or gender. A recovering addicts environment especially following inpatient or outpatient treatment, has an immense impact on sobriety. The term “social model recovery” is used to describe the process of relearning and gaining control over responses to challenges, stresses and anxieties in recovery. Recovering addicts, benefit from this model of recovery in that they learn and connect with others who have shared similar experiences and overcome similar obstacles. Watching and doing as positive role models do helps provides strength and hope to newly recovering addicts. Sober living homes, are often operated by former addicts in recovery and builds a community of individuals who are fighting to reach the same goal, sobriety. Living together and working towards common goals such as self-acceptance, anger management, and abstinence are encouraged when peers are supporting one another and the home becomes a positive support system.

Substance use disorder or addiction to substances such as OxyContin, cocaine, alcohol or MDMA, often should be met with residential treatment and long-term care. Furthermore, treatment should be in stages and recovery should be at a pace where patients feel comfortable moving forward. Individuals seeking recovery should choose a program that best suites their needs in terms of their drug dependence and unique life up till now. Find the program that is likely to increase chances of a full recovery and that has options which promote that such as sober living, detox, rehab, vocational training, and alternative therapies. Choosing an outpatient detox expecting to gain long term abstinence is not healthy because that detox only treats the physical dependence rather than all components of addiction. Look for a drug treatment facilities that provide services such as sober living homes or halfway houses after intensive treatment can be the perfect bridge between the person’s old life and the new.

 What is a sober living environment?

A sober living community refers to a residence or facility that recovering addicts can stay at in order to help them through the transition from intensive treatment for addiction to a normal way of life. Many people’s friends and support networks that are part of their old life are not supportive environments for a person trying to make a change in their lifestyle. A SLE is a place where a recovering person can make new connections with others that are on the same page as them. The entire environment is drug and alcohol free as well as free from negative attitudes. It helps people to transition through the sudden stop of substance use in rehab to a normal functioning life in their future.

What is it like to be part of a Sober Living Environment ?

Even though every Sober Living program may have its differences in how they are run, there are things that can be expected from all of them. The following is what it is like to be a part of a sober living home or environment:

  • Morning schedule – Structure is an important part of making a stable routine and residents will be expected to make their beds every morning and give ample time to have breakfast and take medication they may have to take.
  • Meals – Some facilities require that you prepare your own meals while others will have meals prepared for breakfast and dinner.
  • Daily responsibilities – Transportation is often provided for residents to get to work or school facilities.
  • Housework – All members of the sober living community will be required to do their part. Chores are often preformed after school or work.
  • Communication – Many Sober Living facilities will have daily meetings, usually at the end of the day, where issues concerning the household can be discussed keeping the channels of communication open.
  •  Support groups – Since many of the residents will often be involved in the same programs, such as the 12-step, people will often leave to attend a meeting together.
  •  Free time – After meetings and chores, free time is usually given where relaxing activities such as reading, talking and writing letters is encouraged.
  •  Progression –  Choosing to enter a sober living home after inpatient or outpatient treatment enables the recovering individual to progress through stages of recovery while slowly getting working towards total independence. Addicts are not overwhelmed by freedom but get comfortable practicing recovery on their own.

 Benefits of Being a Part of a Sober Living Program or Living in a Sober Environment 

Overall, the biggest benefit of being in a sober living community is preventing relapse. It was shown by the National Institute on Drug Abuse that as many as 40-60 percent of people relapse into drug and alcohol abuse. Sober living homes  provide a space where the person’s behavior can continue to be monitored over a longer term period to ensure that healthy habits are established moving forward.

Maintaining sobriety by going to regular meetings is made easier by being part of the environment because there is often a group of people going and it is encouraged. Establishing new friendships is also made possible with like-minded individuals who have empathy towards the recovering person being a part of their lives.

 

 

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