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Relapse Prevention Therapy for Addiction (RPT)

The focus of Relapse Prevention Therapy for Addiction is to help a person identify high-risk situations and develop a plan with coping strategies to minimize or prevent relapse.

It is generally understood that drug or alcohol addiction relapse is more likely to occur if a person engages in certain high-risk actions or behaviors and they fail to use effective coping strategies that are designed to avoid relapse.

Relapse Prevention Therapy (RPT) is based on addressing these high-risk situations when they occur and developing effective coping mechanisms to prevent the possibility of experiencing a relapse.

In looking at high-risk situations, Relapse Prevention Therapy includes two main categories:

  • Coping Skills – thought processes
  • Behavioral Actions – responses or reactions to lifestyle, environment, etc.
relapse prevention therapy addiction

Contact Us For More Information on Relapse Prevention Therapy

Identifying Relapse Possibilities

When beginning Relapse Prevention Therapy, it’s important for everyone to understand the prevalence of relapse possibilities. The therapist and the client discuss how high risk situations could directly contribute to putting the client in a dangerous circumstance for relapsing.

In the initial assessment, the therapist may begin by having the client describe and examine circumstances in their life that could lead to a relapse.

Relapse Prevention Assessment Questions

  • Where do they go?
  • Who are their friends?
  • Is their dealer’s number still in their phone?
  • Is paraphernalia still within easy reach?

The relapse prevention therapist also guides the client to look at far more subtle events or experiences that might also lead to a relapse. Many times he or she doesn’t consciously realize certain habits, places, or people can trigger an unhealthy or negative emotional response.

These are many ways clients may set themselves up for self-sabotage from seemingly innocent activities like overworking, which creates a constant feeling of pressure and stress.

Perhaps the client has no healthy, pleasurable recreational outlet, or they haven’t returned to doing the things they once enjoyed prior to their addiction.

The client might be listening to the same music they listened to when they were trapped in their addiction and that could subconsciously create and promote a vulnerability to relapse.

The relapse prevention therapist has an opportunity to help the client see how different events or behaviors could lead to emotional triggers and find ways to build working strategies that are realistic to the client’s life.

The therapist also helps the client examine other emotional areas where an individual may be inclined to gravitate toward using. This might entail helping the client recognize anger, anxiety, boredom, depression, or even celebratory types of feelings.

It’s important to make a mental note if there is a desire to use drugs or alcohol when those feelings occur.

The therapist helps the client realize and understand it’s not just a matter of identifying the feelings. It’s also essential to discover coping skills to be utilized when the feelings arise and apply effective techniques that directly contribute to preventing a relapse.

Learning Relapse Prevention Coping Skills

After learning to identify a full range of relapse possibilities, the therapist helps the client formulate and implement new coping skills and strategies for high-risk situations. This is an extremely important component, and critical to Relapse Prevention Therapy’s success as a viable therapeutic modality.

One effective behavioral coping technique includes learning how to leave an uncomfortable situation, be it a location where drugs and alcohol are present, or walking away from an emotionally charged environment.

The client who is able to negotiate his or her way through these high-risk situations by using effective coping strategies has a far greater opportunity to continue being abstinent and prevent relapse.

Steady and stable abstinence over time will build a sense of self-sufficiency, and directly contributes to the client’s continued sobriety and recovery spiraling upward in a healthy direction.

By recognizing risky situations and becoming proficient at utilizing successful coping skills, Relapse Prevention Therapy strengthens a person’s ability to return to the world and a healthy environment.

With a relapse prevention plan for how to avoid and work through vulnerable circumstances where high-risk situations present themselves, our clients are well prepared to thrive in recovery.


Relapse Prevention Therapy at Oro House

At Oro House, we ensure our clients have the greatest opportunity to live a whole and healthy life, and relapse prevention is one branch in the tree of their life of recovery.

Relapse Prevention Therapy is a very important evidence-based treatment therapy we use in our addiction treatment program.

It incorporates many tools from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and is a necessary component for living a life of sobriety and abstinence.

We collaborate with our clients during their stay with us, and we believe that building a shared bond is vitally important for recovery and healing.

We strive to empower and guide each of our clients as they begin the journey toward experiencing a happy and more fulfilling life in the world.

Our comprehensive non 12 step rehab program offers the most successful treatment therapies like Relapse Prevention Therapy that have shown to be effective for the individual needs of each client.

Oro House is licensed by the California Department of Healthcare Services (DHCS) and Joint Commission Accredited, which is considered the Gold Standard of patient care and safety.

Newsweek recognized Oro House as one of America’s Best Addiction Treatment Centers in 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023.

Call us at (888) 595-0235 to find out more about Relapse Prevention Therapy for Addiction in Los Angeles and Malibu, California.