Can You Drink Alcohol in Recovery from Drug Addiction?
After you settle back into real life after drug addiction treatment and start to socialize more, you may wonder if it is safe to drink with friends or in an after-work glass of wine or beer. You may feel that your problem was drug abuse and not alcohol addiction, so a drink or two won’t hurt. However, there are significant risks to alcohol consumption to recovering drug addicts. Many addiction groups highly advocate total abstinence.
What Happens During Drug Addiction Recovery
Usually, the first step in substance abuse recovery is drug rehab, which helps eliminate the physical part of drug addiction. Once you have that out of our system, you can continue to drug rehab which will help the psychological and behavioral aspects of drug addiction. Whether you participate in inpatient treatment or outpatient treatment, your addiction treatments will be centered around evidence-based drug treatment like cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, family therapy, and even some holistic treatments. Once treatment programs are complete and successful, you can go back out into the world with your toolbox of relapse prevention skills and what feels like a good handle on your drug addiction. As a chronic disorder, you will also likely continue the recovery process by going to individual therapy and support groups like Narcotics Anonymous.
Risks of Drinking During Drug Addiction Recovery
Studies have shown that those who drink alcohol during substance abuse recovery run the risk of alcohol-induced relapse. Alcohol is an inhibitor that affects your actions, judgment, and mood. Consuming alcohol may cause a struggle in making good decisions or choosing harmful behaviors. Taking a mind-altering substance like alcohol, can make sticking to drug abuse treatment more challenging and with lowered inhibitions, it may trigger a desire to return to the drug of choice.
Many factors contribute to substance abuse, not just the physical addictiveness of the drug. A person with addictive behaviors, may be compelled to continue those behaviors with other substances. Consuming alcohol may unlock those addictive behaviors and run the risk of developing an alcohol use disorder. You also run the risk of ruining your sober relationships.
What Is Cross Addiction
Past substance use disorder and addictive behavior, molds the mind into embracing other addiction and behaviors in the future. It is natural to feel an urge to replace drug addiction with something else following drug rehab. Cross addiction is when a person has two or more addictive substances or behaviors, which do not need to happen simultaneously. You can be in drug treatment recovery but develop an addiction to another drug or behavior, such as alcohol use disorder, gambling addiction, and even exercise addiction, which some may call addictive personalities. It is anything that will trigger the brain’s dopamine reward system and having one addiction makes a person more susceptible to cross addiction.
How To Avoid Drug and Alcohol Cross Addiction
If you already have a drug addiction, you are more likely to develop a cross addiction. The best way to avoid cross addiction is to educate yourself and others. During early addiction recovery, your brain is still looking for that dopamine reward rush you got from drug abuse. Let doctors know you have a substance use disorder and avoid taking addictive substances and medications, especially pain medications like oxycodone and other opioid medications to avoid an opioid or fentanyl addiction. Avoid situations that make you want to use illicit drugs or alcohol such as nightclubs if you feel too tempted. Try to fill your life with healthy activities and relationships. Constantly check in with yourself if you are noticing addictive behaviors and do not hesitate to ask for help.
Drug and Alcohol Rehab at DayBreak Treatment Center
If you are struggling with addiction, DayBreak Treatment Solutions can help you through evidence-based addiction treatments. Our multiple levels of care include drug detox, inpatient treatment, intensive outpatient program (IOP), partial hospitalization program (PHP), and other outpatient programs to meet anyone in their drug addiction needs. If you are struggling with your sobriety, please reach out for help before your substance abuse disorder gets worse. Our addiction specialist is always available to take your call at (844) 695-0083.