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The Importance of Counseling During the Addiction Recovery Process

Drug Counseling

Along with the rest of the nation, the state of Tennessee has been hit hard by the opiate epidemic in recent years. While deaths in Tennessee caused by opioid overdoses rose by almost 50 percent between the years of 2012 and 2015, heroin overdose deaths rose by a staggering 350 percent during the same time period. 

In 2016, opioid overdose deaths jumped by an additional 12 percent, leading to over 1,600 deaths that year alone. 

If you are addicted to opiates, be sure to seek help before you become a statistic. While the prescription medication Suboxone will be a great aid during the drug recovery process, you also need to see a counselor on a regular basis while in recovery. 

Read on to learn the benefits of visiting a drug treatment counselor on a regular basis while in opioid drug recovery. 

1. Your Counselor Can Help You Determine Why You Use Opioids

Getting to the root cause of why you began using opioids in the first place and treating that cause can help you avoid relapse in the future. Many people who suffer from substance abuse disorders are selfmedicating to relieve feelings of depression, anxiety, or the symptoms of other mental health disorders. 

If your counselor determines that you began using opioids to relieve the symptoms of a mental health disorder, he or she will help you treat the underlying disorder to help you manage the feelings that led you to crave drugs in the first place. 

2. They Can Help You Learn to Avoid Triggers

No matter how determined you are to stay clean and sober during your drug treatment program, you will likely encounter situations, feelings, and even people that trigger drug cravings you do not expect. There are two types of drug craving triggers: internal and external triggers. Internal triggers are typically feelings, while external triggers are people, places, objects, and situations. 

Stress, loneliness, anger, and boredom are all very common internal triggers, although there are many more. Your counselor will help you take steps to manage these feelings without using drugs to eliminate them. 

Common external triggers include friends or acquaintances who use drugs themselves; places you used or bought drugs in the past; and social activities where you used drugs, such as parties. Your counselor will help you learn to avoid external triggers and/or conquer them without using drugs depending on whether the trigger is avoidable or not. 

3. They Can Help You Manage Drug Cravings

No matter how many steps you take to control internal and external triggers, you will likely still experience drug cravings from time to time. Your counselor will teach you what to do when cravings strike to help you avoid relapsing. One way they may teach you to conquer cravings is to distract yourself with a meaningful activity when they occur. Good distraction activities include exercising, chit-chatting with friends and family members, or watching a good movie.

Starting a new hobby you enjoy to keep yourself occupied during the time of day or night you used to spend using drugs can also help you manage drug cravings. If you are currently unemployed, then starting a new job is also a great way to stay busy to help prevent relapse. 

4. They Can Help You Repair Broken Family Bonds

Many people who abuse drugs begin to experience problems in their relationships while they are using. You may have many sober friends or family members who no longer interact with you due to your history of drug abuse or the behavior you displayed while abusing drugs. 

Your counselor can help you repair broken bonds with friends and family members. They may suggest ways for you to repair these bonds outside of your counseling sessions or recommend family therapy sessions where your family members visit your counselor with you and engage in the therapy experience together. 

If you are addicted to opioids, you need to realize that counseling sessions are a very important part of the recovery process. Contact Compassionate Addiction Recovery Services to seek the addiction treatment you need.