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How to Handle Drug Dreams In Early Recovery

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drug dreamsDrug dreams… if you’ve experienced them on a regular basis, or even just one time, then you probably are aware of how much anxiety and fear these drug dreams can instill inside of you.  Maybe you popped right up, awakened from your slumber and cringing from belief that you actually went back out and picked up your drug of choice.  After taking a moment to breathe normally again and come back to reality, you gratefully realize that it was nothing but a dream.  But why does the horror still remain intact in your mind, maybe even as fresh as the last time you actually used your drug of choice?  Or better yet, why do you have to experience drug dreams at all?  These are the kinds of questions that may run over and over again in your mind as you try to analyze your subconscious tactics as if they were the missing piece of a puzzle of confusion created within your head.

The Truth About Drug Dreams and the Interpretation of Dreams

With researchers publicizing the idea that if a recovering addict dreams about going back out and using, it means that the chance of the event actually occurring in reality is more likely, many addicts become frustrated about their drug dreams.  Having drug dreams does not necessarily signify that the recovering addict will definitely relapse.  Research has actually proposed the thought that drug dreams occur, especially in early recovery, simply as a craving or fluctuation of prior memories.  Still, many addicts believe that the dream refers to them second-guessing their abstinence from their drug of choice and worry they are susceptible.  Even if that were the case, there are always actions that can be taken to stay cautious and aware of relapse behavior.  Try not to get too worked up over drug dreams though.

What To Do

The most important piece of information to take away from drug dreams is blatantly obvious: it’s only a dream!  You can have amazing and even horrific, despicable dreams that leave you wondering how you could have possibly processed something so out of character for you.  Though many people, including sleep specialists, believe that dreams signify real emotions and experiences from the waking life, reality provides the only true, concrete views people have to go off of in order to continue with the daily business of their lives.  So whenever you awaken in a flutter from a temperamental drug dream, remind yourself to remain calm.  Try practicing some coping skills, like writing about the drug dreams, talking about them, or going for a walk to ease your mind.

Drug dreams can be frightening, depressing, thrilling, overbearing – you name the word and it could apply, but they do not have to control you.  Above all, drug dreams can surely be deceiving, as they do not predict that you will absolutely relapse.  With your subconscious displaying something that you could potentially perceive as crucial, you have to remember to stay focused on your recovery and be grateful that you did not take a step back with a relapse.  Sometimes it can even feel great to wake up after a drug dream because you never had to give up your sobriety and that can be quite a beautiful relief.

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