Making the conscious effort to recover from a drug and alcohol addiction is praiseworthy. This is a difficult step to take. Yet, it is important for both loved ones and the addict to understand the road that lies ahead.

Once the decision to rehabilitate is made, individuals will commonly believe that the hardest step is over. Acknowledgment is difficult, likewise completing addiction treatment and rehab is challenging, yet what potentially lies ahead post recovery can also carry tests; that is, dry drunk syndrome.

Find out the signs and symptoms of dry drunk syndrome, the key to avoidance and also appropriate treatment options if ongoing psychological impacts continue post rehab.

What causes dry drunk syndrome?

The term dry drunk syndrome initially originates from the 12-step programme to addiction recovery. It is known as those behaviours or embedded feelings/mental health issues, initially driving drug and alcohol abuse.

Dry drunk syndrome is exactly that, the underlying issue which has fuelled initial substance abuse, continuing its motivation, until an addiction develops. Yet, once psychological rehabilitation has been completed, many individuals will believe that those underlying issue will diminish. In most cases, mental health issues and influences will become non-existent. This is down to the degree of completed psychologically driven addiction treatments. Yet for individuals who’s stopped drinking or abusing substances alone, dry drunk syndrome is highly likely.

This is down to the lack of deep psychological recovery when detoxifying alone. Although withdrawal symptoms may have been experienced, although consumption may have stopped, underlying influences can fester, developing dry drunk syndrome. This is also concerning, as an ongoing psychological issue can revive substance abuse, making recovery even harder.

Although dry drunk syndrome can be treated, this is why it’s always important to consider specialist recovery programmes; helping you fully overcome the initial trigger.

The signs and symptoms of dry drunk syndrome

For those who have recovered, you’ll expect happiness, excitement and a new lease of life. Well, the symptoms of dry drunk syndrome deviate from this, helping you gauge whether a loved one is still living with psychological side effects.

Common signs and symptoms of dry drunk syndrome include:

– Depression and great worry of relapse
– Resentment to others who haven’t experienced addiction
– Great negativity
– Being self-obsessed
– Developing new fixations or mental health issues.

If you spot any of these signs, considering support and further treatment may be a requirement to help your friend or loved one through this transition. It is important to remember that although consumption may have stopped, addiction is a psychological illness. There is potential for aspects of the mind to still be affected, especially if limited addiction treatment has been completed.

It’s also important to remember that addiction is a personal matter. Many individuals develop addictions based off underlying personal issues. With this in mind, there is potential for this issue to be causing concern, worry or doubt post rehab.

Yet, those inner battles can lead to further addiction and mental health issues. Therefore, it’s important to acknowledge dry drunk syndrome sensitively, while helping those suffering through this time.

How can loved ones help through this transition?

As a family member, loved one or friend, you can help those suffering through dry drunk syndrome. There are a number of ways you can support this transition.

One of the most effective ways to support individuals through dry drunk syndrome is by encouraging and motivating continuous addiction treatment. It is likely that while living with these ongoing psychological issues, individuals will question their ability to fully recover. By promoting ability and the benefits of recovery, you’ll increase their chances of completing further psychologically driven treatment options.

Alongside promoting treatment, encouraging healthy, happy and positive feelings, attitudes, behaviours and environments will help to reduce those associated depressive and failed feelings. It is important to remember that those struggling with addiction will feed off the energy of their surroundings. With this in mind, by promoting an upbeat and progressive atmosphere, you’ll help to diminish the signs of dry drunk syndrome.

Some great examples of encouraging healthier habits include:

– Starting a new hobby together
– Promote health and fitness
– Spend some quality time together
– Consider alternative therapies, such as meditation
– Discuss and explore ongoing addiction treatment, increasing your loved one’s comfort levels

The best step you can take through tackling dry drunk syndrome is by offering support and guidance to those suffering. It is likely that they will turn to you at this time of need. Be prepared with positive stimulations and activities to promote healthier habits, attitudes and outlooks.

Appropriate treatment options

Although the likes of alcoholics’ anonymous sessions and support groups work well when considering addiction recovery, findings have shown how alternative treatment options are beneficial for those dealing with dry drunk syndrome.

In many cases, group therapy will be recommended. This is a great way to increase accountability, while promoting the inspiration to recover. As the saying goes… ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’. With this in mind, progressive group therapy will have the potential to slowly diminish the underlying issue fuelling dry drunk syndrome.

Alongside group treatment options, individual therapy will also be beneficial. For those who’ve rehabilitated alone, it is likely that limited therapy has taken place. By opening up to addiction counsellors and sharing the underlying issues fuelling initial substance abuse, it is likely that the ongoing psychological issue can be reduced; with the aim to fully diminish dry drunk syndrome.

Working through dry drunk syndrome is possible, with the right support

If you’re currently experiencing this difficult time alone, reach out to our compassionate team here at Step 1 Recovery. Through our rehab centre, we can help individuals recover from substance abuse, addiction and connected mental health issues; minimising the potential of dry drunk syndrome.

If you’re concerned that a family member or friend may be experiencing dry drunk syndrome post addiction recovery, it is important to support them through this difficult time. Ongoing addiction treatment should be encouraged, along with positive and inspiring behaviours to ease this transition. If you personally require any support, feel free to contact our team today.