The severity and indeed life-affecting consequences of sex addiction are really only fully understood by those who have been affected by the problem personally. Despite often being overlooked as a less serious addiction and one that is relatively simple to overcome, sex addiction has the potential to be just as detrimental and challenging as any other addiction.
Also, just as with other addictions, those recovering after successful sex addiction treatment need to be aware of the dangers of relapse. In the weeks, months and years following sessions with the appropriate sex addiction counsellor in Kent, there is still much that needs to be done to ensure that the improvements and progress made are permanent. The likelihood of relapse will vary in accordance with the individual in question and their unique circumstances, but in all instances there is much that can be done to steer things in the right direction.
So for the benefit of those at any stage before, during or after the sex addiction treatment process, here’s a quick overview of a few tips from the experts of how to minimise the likelihood of relapse:
- First of all, it’s important to remember that stress and anxiety are exceptionally powerful relapse triggers when it comes to almost every addiction there is. When a recovering addict is stressed, they become inherently more likely to make bad decisions and slip back into former habits. Sex can be seen as something as a means by which to escape reality, or at least put problems on hold, which is why it is of the utmost importance to try to minimise and manage stress effectively at all times.
- There are also a variety of standard lifestyle triggers that can quite easily result in an individual going back to their old ways. In the case of those recovering from sex addiction, fairly obvious examples of the kind of habits and activities to avoid going back to include going into the kinds of places where sexual partners used to be sought – nightclubs and bars, for example. The same also goes for looking at pornography and generally being exposed to sex or any kind of sexual activity that could become a relapse trigger.
- Never overlook the importance of on-going help and assistance throughout the recovery process. Even in instances where it appears as if treatment has been successful and life is almost entirely back to normal, it can be a good idea to occasionally consult the professionals once again – especially during times of weakness. It’s amazing how reassuring and helpful third-party advice can be when going through such times.
- Looking after your health in general is also of the utmost importance, for the simple reason that ill health has a tendency to be a relapse catalyst in its own right. Poor physical health more often than not results in poor psychological health, which makes it difficult to make proactive decisions and increases the likelihood of slipping back into old habits. Now more than ever, it is important to look after yourself and look after yourself properly, at that.
- If you find yourself turning to other substances as a means by which to quell sexual cravings, this is something that should be brought to the professionals immediately. Under no circumstances should one detrimental habit be replaced by another, as in doing so you run the risk of entering into another dangerous addiction, which over time could itself become a trigger for the successfully treated sex addiction.
- Working with something of a schedule and set of simple goals can also be extremely helpful when recovering from any kind of addiction. It is not simply a case of saying that from this day forward, you will immediately behave and carry yourself in a manner that is 100% fabulous in every way. Instead, it’s about taking one step at a time and being sure to give yourself credit for the smaller achievements you make along the way.
- Last but not least, it is common knowledge that the single most powerful and detrimental relapse trigger for any kind of addiction whatsoever is boredom. The reason being that boredom not only leads to poor decision-making in its own right, but can lead to depression, anxiety, feelings of isolation and various other powerful relapse triggers. This is why during recovery periods it is a good idea to not only indulge in all the activities and pastimes you like, but also consider trying a variety of new things for the first time. If it keeps you entertained and isn’t hazardous to your health, it is something you should be doing more of!