4 Reasons It’s Important to Know How You’re Feeling After Treatment

4 Reasons It’s Important to Know How You’re Feeling After Treatment

After rehab ends, take stock of how you feel physically and emotionally to recognize the signs of relapse

Taking stock of how you are feeling physically and emotionally is like making a grocery list: if you do not know what you need, then chances are you will miss important things and come home with unhealthy items. Think about understanding your feelings as a way to take inventory—to prepare for what is ahead by knowing what is behind. If you understand your feelings after drug or alcohol rehab treatment ends, then you can prepare yourself for a brighter future. Consider these four reasons it is important to know about your heart, mind and body after drug treatment ends:

Your Feelings Are Gauges to Your Emotional Wellbeing

Although feelings can fluctuate regularly (and sometimes hourly), they are gauges to your emotional wellbeing. For instance, if you are constantly sad, have your feelings easily hurt, cry at the drop of a hat or have a hair trigger in response to anger, then chances are that you are suppressing feelings that you need to deal with in order to move forward with your life. During drug or alcohol rehab, your team of doctors, therapists and counselors probably helped you identify triggers that can begin an emotional roller coaster for you; but now that you have finished treatment, learn what your triggers are and how to control them to help prevent relapse.

Relapse typically happens when a recovering addicts becomes overwhelmed by circumstances or is confronted by drug cravings without a proper response plan. A healthy state of mind can help you recognize when those moments come, which means you can take the necessary steps to avoid spiraling out of control. When cravings occur, call your accountability partner, attend extra support-group sessions or meet with your therapist to overcome a rough spot in recovery. Being able to measure your feelings and connect them to your emotional wellbeing can protect your recovery and keep you on the path to a drug-free life.

Your Feelings Let You Know When You Need to Talk

If you know when you need to talk to someone about your recovery journey and where you are now in terms of sobriety, then you have found an important part of staying clean. Talk therapy is one of the most widely used treatment methods in drug and alcohol rehab—if you learn to identify your feelings and talk about them openly, then you may find a level of understanding that you never knew was possible. During rehab, your therapists and counselors probably guided you to communicate in healthy ways, because talking helps recovering addicts “unpack” unhealthy thought patterns that can derail sobriety. Negative self-talk can lead to self-doubt, which can eventually lead to feelings of inadequacy when it comes to resisting the urge to use again. Measure your feelings by talking about them with your support group, accountability partner, therapist, trusted friend or loved one. By taking this action, you can recognize unhealthy emotional patterns that need to change if you are to avoid relapse.

Physical Feelings Mirror Emotional Wellness

Your emotional health is directly connected to your physical health, so acknowledge your physical health after you leave rehab to gain an important tool to fight relapse. For instance, during your time spent in treatment, you should have received nutrition counseling—perhaps you even participated in exercise programs or other activities to increase your physical health. In response, if you pay attention to physical changes after you leave rehab, then you can see how you are doing emotionally. If you feel anxious or worried, have trouble sleeping, feel nauseated, have other digestive issues or suffer from increased fatigue, then these could be signs that you are becoming emotionally overwhelmed after rehab. Talk to your therapist about your physical symptoms, visit your doctor for a check-up and do what you can to relieve anxiety in healthy ways. These acts can lessen and even prevent drug and alcohol cravings that threaten sobriety.

Feelings Help Moderate Expectations

When you leave rehab, knowing how you feel physically and emotionally can regulate your expectations. You may feel tired, emotionally drained and vulnerable, but knowing these feelings and accepting that they are normal will help you keep your expectations for recovery in check. You will not feel empowered nor positive each and every day of your recovery journey, because you will have some days that are better than others. However, knowing that all of these problems are a part of your life-long commitment to staying clean and sober helps you adopt a realistic, one-day-at-time philosophy toward recovery.

Find Help for Drug and Alcohol Addiction

Learn how you feel when you leave rehab to maintain an important tool against drug and alcohol relapse. If you or a loved one struggles with substance abuse, then know that we are here to help you. Call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline right now to speak to an admissions coordinator about available treatment options. You can recover with the right help.