Even effectively treated people with addictions will confront
unexpected situations after they leave a treatment program and return
to their home environment. These situations may produce intense periods
of craving to re-use alcohol and other drugs. Lapse, defined as re-use
of alcohol or drugs at least once following treatment, occurs in at
least 50% of those who complete treatment. The most dangerous period
for lapse is the first 3-6 months after completion of formal treatment.
Relapse, defined as return to excessive or problematic use, is less
common, occurring in approximately 20-30% of those who complete formal
care in the prior year.
It is critical that patients, their families and friends prepare for
the possibility of lapse and relapse. The preparation should include
early detection of a lapse and establishment of steps to keep that
problem from becoming a full-blown relapse. Two sets of activities can
reduce the likelihood of relapse and reduce the severity if it does
A good addiction treatment program prepares patients to:
These generic elements of effective planning during treatment are
among the best clinical practices available to forestall lapse. This
planning should involve families so they can better understand the
treatment issues, be prepared to support the recovery plan and be aware
of signs of lapse.
To prevent and contain relapse the family should agree to fully
participate in planned continuing care activities. Families and all
concerned others can take five helpful steps:
Excerpted from: HBO: ADDICTION: AFTERCARE
“I have worked with Hired Power extensively in collaboration with Clearview Treatment Programs’ individualized outpatient program. I am always impressed with their effectiveness and professionalism.”
“Thanks again for being there for us and guiding us through some rough waters. Your kindness and genuine concern deeply touched my soul and we are all grateful our paths crossed when they did. You are a truly gifted professional, keep on doing what you do so well.”
“I just want to thank Hired Power for the PRA. He was a perfect match and I can’t say enough…. He was intensely committed. This is the first time I have been clean in over 30 years. Thank you again.”
“I don’t look at you (Hired Power) as hiring a service, I look at you as saving my life.” (referring to his ability to stay sober after returning home).