The world of mental health and sobriety research is constantly evolving. Society is finally starting to embrace the importance of maintaining good mental health and how mental health care impacts your sobriety. Dr. Loren Martin, of the Alter Health Group, is someone who is doing incredible work and changing the approach to mental health care for people who undergo treatment for substance abuse. Through a process called continuing care, the recovery process is becoming more achievable for everyone.
What Factors Contribute to Relapse After Treatment?
When people who struggle with substance abuse enter treatment, they are bombarded with a multitude of intense psychoeducation, interventions, and techniques to handle stresses and triggers. The overall goal is to discover the conditions that cause triggers to use substances as well as maintain your sobriety. However, treatment sometimes teaches and develops unhealthy coping strategies that can lead to a relapse. People who enter treatment centers can also struggle to motivate themselves if they ever lack a constant support system.
A major contributor to relapse is a lack of support. When you don’t have people rallying around you, it can be very difficult to stay encouraged and positive about your sobriety. It is much easier to bare your struggles when someone is there to help hold them up. During a typical treatment, you can’t often control how strong your support system is. When you see your support system faltering, it can become a scary threat to your recovery.
Virtual treatment programs focus on a strong support system, coping strategies, and symptom management. However, it takes a long time and hard work to gain control over your cravings and behaviors, so relapse is not uncommon. Wanting to be sober is a great first step to recovery, but it isn’t always enough to last a long time. Dr. Martin’s continuing care model helps to bridge the gap between wanting to be sober and staying sober.
What Is Continuing Care?
Before the continuing care model, treatment for substance abuse acted as a one-time, several-week, residential, or outpatient intervention with minimal follow-up. It was intense and often overwhelming to experience, but it was also depicted as a cure for substance abuse. Continuing care has changed this idea by treating substance abuse as a chronic condition. It is understood that chronic conditions can be controlled but not cured. This may sound grim, but changing our mindset to fit this idea has greatly improved the outcomes of sobriety.
Continuing care is a program that begins with a commitment made by those seeking sobriety to change their lifestyle after completing treatment. Committing to continuing care consists of therapy groups and support, tracking symptoms and cravings, and working with professionals to develop healthy coping strategies to fight for your sobriety every day. This model shows better recovery outcomes and a reduced rate of relapse compared to typical treatment.
One hurdle found with continuing care is people’s ability to actively leave their homes and attend an in-person program. Whether it is a problem of physical distance, lack of engagement, or lack of developing the habit of going, some people have difficulties making the trip to a continuing care program. Providing a virtual option to continuing care programs created more success because you don’t have to worry about finding a program close to your home. The program is right on your phone or computer.
By combining typical treatment with the continuing care model, the chances of staying sober and mentally healthy increase greatly. As an easily accessible, virtual program, anyone and everyone can benefit from the continuing care model and take their sobriety journey to a new level of success. No longer do you have to worry about leaving the house on time or being pressured into participating. You don’t have to worry about feeling the burnout that comes with in-person programs.
Continuing Care With Mindfuli
The Mindfuli difference begins with our proprietary Care Predictor algorithm that screens all care providers to ensure that they have the necessary personal attributes to form a strong therapeutic alliance with people on the Mindfuli platform. Once paired with a care provider, Mindfuli provides a unique continuing care program that combines evidence-based practices of peer support and cognitive-behavioral relapse prevention skills to support a new, healthy, and sober lifestyle.
The Mindfuli platform is easily accessible so individuals in continuing care can receive immediate stability, monitor symptoms and recovery capital, participate in virtual support groups, and receive weekly personalized counseling.
Transitions between care levels are considered periods of high risk for relapse within the recovery population, especially when an individual is first discharged from acute treatment programs. So, no matter what stage in your sobriety journey, our continuing care program will work with your needs. Mindfuli includes measurement-based care with personalized treatment plans utilizing an evidence-based curriculum with interventions tailored to an individual’s values.
Talking to a therapist about starting a continuing care program is an amazing achievement on its own. With Mindfuli, you can work with a health care provider that is tailored to your needs. Whether you just completed treatment, have been sober for a few months, or have been sober for years, continuing care programs can help you develop healthy coping strategies to maintain your sobriety. You have the ability to take control of your cravings and behaviors today. Start a continuing care program today. The therapeutic alliance is at the heart and soul of the care provided through Mindfuli. To learn more about our virtual therapy platform, call us at (866) 973-4415.