“5 Surprising Triggers That Can Derail a Teen’s Addiction Recovery Journey”

How Parents Can Help Their Teenagers Avoid Relapse After Drug Addiction Treatment

Teenagers who have completed drug addiction treatment are at risk of relapse. Unfortunately, there are various common triggers that could drive teenagers back to drug abuse. Parents can play a critical role in helping their teenagers avoid relapse. This article will highlight the triggers and ways in which parents can help their teenagers.


All teenagers experience stress, but for those in recovery from drug addiction, there is an added pressure to steer clear of bad habits. There may be the need to cut off relationships with friends who still use drugs and engage in different social habits, like attending parties or hanging out with unsupervised friends.

The stress from school can be daunting, causing a teenager’s stress levels to skyrocket. When stress piles up, drug use can seem like an appealing escape route, increasing the risk of relapse.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can help their teenagers combat stress by creating a plan together. They should analyze their teenager’s stressors and how each one might contribute to a relapse. They should also listen to their teenager’s needs and provide them with the necessary support such as getting a tutor or extra help with time management for schoolwork.

Besides, parents can encourage their teenager to try stress relievers like exercise, yoga, or meditation. Parents can support their teenager to try something new, such as martial arts, musical instrument or other hobbies that reduce stress.

Peer Pressure

Peer pressure is a powerful influence. At parties or when hanging out with friends who still use drugs, teenagers may feel they have to go along with the crowd. They may use drugs to appear cool or make new friends. Unfortunately, finding new friends who don’t use drugs can be challenging.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can help their teenagers by forming a plan for expectations, rules, and consequences regarding drug use. Parents should talk about how they feel about being pressured by old friends or people they want to be friends with. It’s crucial to encourage teenagers to explain to their peers that they are committed to remaining drug-free.

Parents can practice role-playing scenarios in which their teenagers may feel pressured to use drugs and different ways to respond. Parents can also help their teenagers develop an escape plan. They should encourage their teenagers to join support groups where they can talk with other teenagers going through the same challenges.

Loneliness & Isolation

Giving up old friends and situations that encourage drug use and losing interest in regular activities can lead to loneliness and isolation. Teenagers in recovery may feel like they can’t relate to their peers or end up seeking solace in drugs to combat loneliness.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can help their teenagers by making sure they don’t spend too much time alone, especially in their bedrooms. They should plan family activities and ask their teenagers to watch a show or study with them. Besides, parents should encourage their teenagers to invite their classmates or new friends over for a get-together. A support group where teenagers feel understood by others with similar interests is also helpful.

Social Situations

The likelihood of a teenager avoiding relapse when attending events where drugs are readily accessible is slim to none. There will be gatherings they want to attend, such as school events, football games or a friend’s house, where other teenagers may be using drugs.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can begin by talking to their teenagers about social events that seem safe to them. Parents should encourage their teenagers to try new activities, invite trusted friends over, or attend parent-supervised get-togethers far from the temptations of drugs.


Sitting around the house doing nothing is unexciting, and for teenagers in recovery, it is risky. Boredom opens the gate to drug use since it triggers feelings of loneliness and isolation, making the temptation to use drugs overwhelming.

How Parents Can Help

Parents can help their teenagers overcome boredom by encouraging them to try something new at school, such as joining a club or sport. They can participate in community volunteer projects to help rebuild after a flood or tornado. Volunteering fosters pride, provides an avenue to meet new people, and shows teenagers what the world has to offer beyond drugs and partying.


Relapse triggers are diverse and unique to each teenager recovering from addiction. However, parents’ support can make a significant difference in their teen’s recovery journey. Overall, parents must acknowledge that relapse is not a sign of failure, but part of the process of healing. A relapse can be an opportunity to adjust and re-evaluate the strategy used and improve the recovery process.

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