Philadelphia, PA - It should be no surprise that addiction treatment is not 100% effective 100% of the time. Some people struggle through multiple attempts at recovery, only to relapse and (hopefully) start again. You may have even watched it play out on the big screen this past year in major motion pictures Beautiful Boy, and Ben is Back.
Erasing the Shame of Addiction: Why Chronic Relapse is Not Failure
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) states that relapse rates for drug use are similar to rates for other chronic medical illnesses. If people stop following their medical treatment plan, they are likely to relapse. But with each repeated attempt, individuals begin to lose hope that it will work for them.
Why do we equate substance use disorder (SUD) relapse with failure? Does an oncologist say you failed if your cancer returns? Of course not.
“Relapse is a common occurrence in addiction recovery, and it’s important for individuals – and their families – not to give up hope if it does happen,” said Scott Weisenberger, LPC, Vice President of Clinical Services for Recovery Centers of America. “Understanding that doesn’t mean that we encourage relapse but that we can learn the skills to move on from it and try again.”
Fortunately, a new program is focused on inspiring hope and re-energizing recovery efforts with the right tools for those who relapse.
The 3-4 week PRISE program at Recovery Centers of America at Devon, PA is an innovative yet evidence-based approach for anyone who struggles with chronic relapse. The name stands for “Promoting Recovery through Intensive Support and Education” which is precisely what it does via specially trained staff, useful therapeutic models like Acceptance Commitment Therapy, and an outlined curriculum that focuses on reuniting patients with their values and self-worth.
Patients are also assigned alumni mentors and are introduced to volunteerism in the community. Other components include life skills education, wellness activities like yoga and art therapy, 12-Step work, spirituality, and family involvement.
Considering that over 20 million Americans struggle with substance use disorder and that shame is an enormous obstacle in seeking treatment, your audience might be interested to hear more about the issue of relapse, how programs like PRISE can help, and how redefining relapse helps change the perception of addiction to help erase shame and stigma.