Signs of Alcohol or Drug Abuse Relapse

Feb 20, 2019 | Substance Abuse, Addiction

If you are living with someone who is recovering from alcohol or drug abuse, you have probably wondered “How will I know if they relapse?”

Signs to look for that may indicate that a relapse has occurred.
  • Secretiveness – When someone relapses, they often try to hide their usage. They may become evasive when asked questions or begin to hide alcohol or drugs around the house.
  • Dishonesty – Relapse and lying tend to go together. A person who has relapsed will not only deny that they are using drugs or alcohol, but they will often begin to lie about small things for no apparent reason.
  • Increased anger and defensiveness – When someone relapses, they tend to become increasingly angry and defensive. They may blame you for their own behavior or actions rather than accepting responsibility for themselves.
  • Inconsistency in behavior – Relapse often leads to erratic behaviors.
  • Absent for longer periods of time – It takes time to use alcohol or drugs. It also takes time to recover from them. When someone relapses, they often look for ways to be away from the family so they can use it more freely.
  • Increased moodiness – Drugs and alcohol can make you moody. If there is a sudden increase in mood swings it could indicate a relapse has occurred.
  • Erratic sleeping patterns – When someone relapses, they may sleep longer or stay up later.
  • Slurred speech – Slurred speech can indicate that someone is actively using.
  • Change in spending habits – Drugs and alcohol cost money. If you notice that spending patterns have changed, it could indicate that a relapse has occurred.

It is important to trust your instincts. When you have lived with an active alcoholic or addict you know that it can feel crazy at times. If you start feeling old feelings and things quit adding up, it could be that your instincts are telling you that a relapse has occurred. Don’t fall back into old patterns. Remember that honesty, openness, and communication are buffers to relapse.

New Dimensions Can Help!

If you or someone you know is experiencing any of the above symptoms or problems, New Dimensions can help. Our team of experienced therapists and psychiatrists can help you overcome these challenges and help you develop the skills you need to thrive. To schedule a complementary assessment or to find out more about our programs, contact us at 1-800-685-9796.

Our affiliate, MHThrive, provides Individual Therapy, Couples and Marriage Counseling, and Family Therapy at our locations in Katy, The Woodlands, and the Clear Lake area of Houston, Texas. We also provide telehealth therapy for anyone who resides within the State of Texas. To schedule an appointment with one of the MHThrive therapists, contact us at 713-477-0333 or visit to learn more.