An 18-month study published in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs found that social support is one of the most important factors for ongoing successful recovery.1 For many, sober living homes provide the structure and support they need for success in the early months of sobriety, and their risk of relapse during sober living is decreased.
Sober living homes promote recovery in many ways, including helping you develop the practical skills and strategies you need to succeed on your own. Here are five ways a sober residential program reduces your chances of relapse during sober living.
1. They offer a high level of social support.
Sober living homes offer the opportunity to develop healthy relationships in recovery. The people you live with in a sober living situation become your support system, and since they’re going through the same thing, this kind of support can have a powerful effect on your ability to stay sober. You’ll have the chance to improve your social and communication skills as well as make lifelong friendships that can sustain you through difficult times once you move on.
2. They require participation in 12-step groups.
Most sober living homes require some type of support group participation, which can dramatically reduce your risk of relapse during sober living, according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine.2 Twelve-step groups encourage a high level of participation and personal accountability, and they offer strong support as they help you explore a variety of issues relevant to your recovery. They also offer fun and healthy socializing opportunities to reduce feelings of isolation and promote fun without drugs and alcohol.
3. They test for drug or alcohol use.
Effective sober living homes provide regular drug and alcohol testing to reduce your chances of relapse during sober living. Random testing improves motivation and promotes personal accountability to help you stay sober, and it ensures the people you’re living with stay sober, too.
4. They help you develop essential domestic skills.
Residents of a sober living home are expected to pay their bills on time, pitch in to help keep common areas clean and maintain a tidy personal space. Residents shop for groceries and cook, do laundry and are encouraged to maintain a high level of self-care. All of these skills are important for people in recovery, since they promote better health, less stress and higher self-esteem, which are three crucial factors for ongoing success.
5. They provide structure.
A high level of structure can reduce your chances of relapse during sober living. Sober living homes typically have a list of rules to follow, which may include a curfew, attending house meetings and performing a list of daily chores. This structure keeps you busy, promotes self-confidence and personal accountability and gives you a predictable routine to follow each day to help you stay focused on recovery.
Further Reducing Your Chances of Relapse During Sober Living
You can improve your success in a sober living situation by following the rules, engaging with your fellow residents and offering as much support as you receive. Full engagement in your sober living situation promotes developing healthy, beneficial relationships, making good lifestyle choices and gaining the skills you need to successfully fly solo down the road.
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