Life after rehab: adjust and stay sober

Overcoming addiction is often mistakenly viewed as a simple process that just requires detox or spending a few weeks in rehab treatment. However, the truth is that recovery from addiction is a lifelong journey that requires commitment, persistence and continuous support.

Leaving rehab and returning to your everyday life with its triggers and stressors can be a difficult transition but Oasis Bradford can provide you with the essential tools and coping mechanisms you will need to maintain sobriety.

What to expect when you leave rehab

Leaving Oasis Bradford can be a challenging experience as the real world presents a stark contrast to the structured and supportive environment of rehab. However, Oasis Bradford is committed to helping you make the transition to life after alcohol rehab or drug rehab as seamless as possible with two essential support programmes:


At Oasis Bradford, we understand the importance of continued support, which is why we offer one year of free weekly group therapy sessions as part of our aftercare programme. These sessions provide you with the opportunity to share your experiences, challenges and progress with others in a similar situation, fostering a sense of community and mutual support. This ongoing connection helps reinforce the skills and coping mechanisms learned in rehab while offering additional guidance as you navigate life after rehab.

Alumni programme

Our Alumni Programme is designed to provide ongoing support and networking opportunities for those who have completed rehab at Oasis Bradford. This programme allows you to stay connected with peers and staff, participate in messaging groups, attend exclusive events and share your recovery journey with others who understand your experiences. By remaining engaged with the recovery community, you can continue to grow, learn and support one another throughout your journey.

What is relapse?

Relapse is a situation in which a person who has been in recovery for some time returns to using substances or engaging in addictive behaviours. Relapse rates for addiction recovery can range from 40% to 60%; to help prevent relapse it is crucial to be aware of common mistakes and reasons that can lead to it. Some of these include:

  • Complacency or overconfidence in recovery: Believing that you no longer need support or that you can handle recovery on your own can increase the risk of relapse.
  • Lack of a solid support network: Isolation can make it difficult to maintain sobriety as addiction thrives when it is able to get you alone.
  • Exposure to triggers or high-risk situations: Encountering people, places or situations that remind you of your addiction can greatly increase the likelihood of relapse which is why inpatient rehab is usually most effective as it shields you from these triggers.
  • Poor self-care or neglecting mental and physical health: Failing to take care of your physical and emotional wellbeing can weaken your ability to cope with challenges and make you more susceptible to relapse.
  • Inadequate coping mechanisms for stress and emotional challenges: Relying on unhealthy coping mechanisms or not having effective strategies in place can quickly contribute to relapse as you return to drugs and alcohol when difficult moments arise.


Life after rehab - woman depressed after relapse


How can you prevent relapse?

To minimise the risk of relapse, it is essential to be proactive in your recovery journey. Some proven relapse prevention tips and strategies include:

  • Regularly attending support group meetings: Participation in groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous can provide a safe space to share experiences, gain insight and receive support from others in recovery.
  • Developing and practising healthy coping mechanisms: Utilise techniques learned in rehab to manage stress and emotions to maintain your wellbeing and prevent relapse.
  • Avoiding triggers: Be mindful of the situations and environments that can put your sobriety at risk and develop strategies to handle these triggers effectively.
  • Continuing therapy or counselling sessions: Ongoing therapy can help you address any underlying issues, monitor your progress and provide additional support in your recovery journey.
  • Staying connected with a support network: Regularly engaging with family, friends, sponsors and recovery peers can provide encouragement and guidance as you navigate your sobriety journey.
  • Prioritising self-care and maintaining a healthy lifestyle: Taking care of your physical, emotional, and mental well-being is crucial for maintaining sobriety. This includes eating well, exercising, getting enough sleep, and attending to your emotional needs.

Who to include in your support network

A robust support network is crucial for long-term recovery. Some individuals to consider including in your network are:

Family members…

Having family members who understand your journey and provide encouragement can be a significant source of strength in recovery.


Sober friends who share your commitment to sobriety can offer mutual support and participate in healthy activities together, reinforcing your commitment to a substance-free life.

Recovery sponsors or mentors…

A sponsor or mentor with experience in recovery can provide guidance, share their experiences and help you navigate the challenges of sobriety.

Mental health professionals…

Therapists, counsellors and other mental health professionals can help you address underlying issues, develop coping mechanisms, and provide ongoing support.


Life after rehab - mental health professional


Local support groups and their importance

Local support groups and online recovery groups play a crucial role in maintaining long-term sobriety. Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) offer a safe and supportive environment where you can share your experiences, challenges and successes in recovery.

Participating in support groups helps foster a sense of community, accountability and mutual understanding and can provide valuable resources and tools to help you navigate the challenges of maintaining sobriety in everyday life.

How to help a loved one re-enter life after rehab

Supporting a loved one who has recently completed rehab can be challenging but is essential for their ongoing recovery. Here are some practical tips to help:

Educate yourself about addiction and recovery…

Understanding the complexities of addiction and the recovery process can help you provide more informed and empathetic support to your loved one.

Encourage open communication…

Create a safe space for your loved one to openly discuss their feelings, challenges and experiences without judgement or criticism.

Be patient and understanding…

Recovery is a long and often challenging process. Be patient with your loved one as they navigate their journey and understand that setbacks can happen.

Support their efforts to maintain a healthy lifestyle…

Encourage your loved one to prioritise self-care, engage in healthy activities and attend support group meetings or therapy sessions.

Set boundaries…

It’s essential to establish clear boundaries with your loved one to maintain a healthy relationship and protect your own well-being.

Offer practical assistance…

Help your loved one with everyday tasks, such as grocery shopping, attending appointments or finding local support groups, to ease their transition back into daily life.

How can Oasis Bradford prepare you for life after rehab?

The comprehensive treatment programmes at Oasis Bradford are designed to equip you with the necessary skills and healthy strategies you need for life after rehab. Some of the valuable tools and strategies you will gain during your time in rehab include:

  • Understanding the root causes of your addiction: Through a range of different therapies, you will explore the underlying issues that led to your addiction, allowing you to address and heal from these past experiences.
  • Developing healthy coping mechanisms: Rehab will teach you various techniques, such as meditation or worksheets to help you manage stress and emotions in a healthy way.
  • Formulating a personalised aftercare plan: With the guidance of your treatment team, you will create a tailored plan outlining the support and resources needed for your ongoing recovery journey.
  • Improving your communication skills and relationships: Group and individual therapy sessions will help you learn how to express your feelings effectively and build stronger, healthier relationships with those around you. This can be particularly important when preparing for life after rehab for spouses and parents whose addictions may have negatively affected relationships.
  • Learning about relapse prevention techniques and strategies: You will be educated on the warning signs of relapse and develop a plan to address potential triggers and high-risk situations.

By utilising the tools and strategies learned in rehab, building a strong support network, and being proactive in your recovery, you can successfully navigate the challenges of life after rehab.


Life after rehab - alumni care and support

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Oasis Bradford to learn more about our comprehensive addiction treatment and aftercare services.