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‘The Five Rs’ of Resisting Relapse

Our methods here at Miramar in Laguna Beach, California are both tried and proven. With a willing addict, we can truly help transform desire from nothing more than a mere wish into something both substantial and positively permanent. That being said, we’re always on the lookout for new ideas, theories and solutions.

In 2010, Gabor Maté — a famous medical doctor with over two decades of work with the severely addicted on Vancouver’s infamous skid row — published a groundbreaking book, “In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction,” for addiction recovery specialists from here in Laguna Beach, California to the most remote reaches of America’s East Coast. In short, Maté’s book seeks to attack substance abuse from a more holistic approach.

Forming the backbone of Mate´’s book are “The Five Rs’ of resisting drug relapse: Relabel, Reattribute, Refocus, Revalue and Recreate. When the urge to use a harmful drug occurs, an addict should first relabel the thought as just that — a thought, not a command. Next, the thought is reattributed to what once was a past, erroneous desire, after which a sound moment of refocus takes place as a substitute for drug abuse is found and implemented.

Finally, an addict — be it in rehab or at home — must revalue the damaging, short-term thrills that come from substance misuse and recreate the hope that brought them to rehab or a change of heart in the first place. By so doing, any addiction can be overcome.

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