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Understanding Triggers and How to Deal With Them in Recovery

Sadness, depression, and anger can lead to relapse just as much as extreme happiness can. Some people experience cravings when they’re feeling good because they want to feel even better, while the same person may also experience cravings when they’re feeling especially down or sad. External triggers can be very powerful and sometimes, you may not be able to dissociate certain things with your past substance abuse. As a result, when you are confronted with those things, you may experience a very strong desire to drink or get high again. Triggers are places, people, sounds and substances that can cause emotional or mental distress. Imagine I gave you $100 to listen to me tell you a story for 25 minutes. Initially, the $100 elicited an emotion of surprise and excitement .

internal and external triggers

Verywell Mind articles are reviewed by board-certified physicians and mental healthcare professionals. Medical internal and external triggers Reviewers confirm the content is thorough and accurate, reflecting the latest evidence-based research.

The Stages of Relapse

People closest to the individual may set off cravings that eventually lead to a relapse. It is perilous for a person in recovery to be around substance-using friends and family. Even peers who abstain from illicit drugs can be dangerous. Offering alcohol to a former addict may trigger feelings that urge the individual to use drugs. To cope with internal triggers, developing a sober support system is extremely valuable. Being able to talk to someone who has experience dealing with triggers personally is one of the best resources to have. Maintaining relationships with people who are still in the midst of active addiction, or who abuse substances regularly can be triggering and harmful to a person’s recovery.

Whether trigger warnings are helpful or harmful is a subject of debate. This question is particularly relevant in college classrooms.

Much LOVE ❤️ & Till NEXT Time 😎

Have a confidential, completely free conversation with a treatment provider about your financial options. When it comes to making changes to your life to remove triggers, be realistic. There’s no way to prevent fireworks from occurring or certain words from being spoken around you. You don’t want to expose yourself to the people or the substances themselves, for example. By numbing yourself to that risk through exposure, you may be able to defeat it. You are working on reprogramming your mind to break the association between the experience and the drug itself. You experience it so much and so often that it seems to lose its grip on you.

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