The Stages Of Recovery From Drug Addiction: By Recovery Specialists


Drug addiction recovery necessitates a complete lifestyle shift. However, for someone seeking treatment or who is in early recovery, a life free of addiction may seem a million miles away, especially if you don’t know what to anticipate along the journey.

No matter how devastating the impact of drug abuse is, there is always light at the end of the tunnel. 

The transtheoretical model mentions 6 stages of change that the drug abuse patients go through. Observing the stages of change as a sequential cycle, on the other hand, might help you grasp how change happens and how addictive behavior can be treated and managed.

The Stages Of Drug Addiction Recovery

There are six stages in the transtheoretical model of drug addiction recovery synch as;

  • Precontemplation.
  • Contemplation
  • Preparation.
  • Action.
  • Maintenance.
  • Termination. 

These are the six fundamental phases of change in drug addiction treatment. Although people can progress through these phases in the order listed, it’s also usual for them to skip about, go back and forth, or be in two stages simultaneously.

Stage 1: Precontemplation

In this earliest stage of addiction treatment, most people do not see their behavior as a problem. Perhaps they haven’t suffered any negative repercussions due to their actions, or they are oblivious to the seriousness of their actions and the consequences they have suffered.

A person’s addicted behavior is typically beneficial, or even enjoyable, at this stage and hasn’t resulted in any bad effects. That’s why they aren’t interested in receiving any moral advice or being informed about any dangerous side effects at this moment.

Since the patient has not contemplated the seriousness of the drug abuse disorder, there are four categories the medical detox centers, like Gallus Detox, group the patients into. The categories are;

  • Reluctant precontemplator: The patients are unaware of their problem and are demotivated to change.
  • Rebellious precontemplator: They don’t want to let go of the addiction as they enjoy it and don’t want to receive advice from others.
  • Resigned precontemplator: They are overwhelmed by the addiction and are obstinate about not changing.
  • Rationalizing precontemplator: They think they have some good reasons why drug abuse is not an issue for them and why they should continue doing it.

Stage 2: Contemplation

In this stage, the drug abuse patients have acknowledged they have an issue. They may desire to change, but they are unsure if they can fully commit. A person is more receptive to learning about the possible implications of their action and the many solutions accessible at this stage.

They are, however, still debating. They haven’t committed to a specific plan yet; thus, they haven’t made a change. In addition, years might pass during the pondering period. Therefore, patients may go to the next level or relapse to precontemplation at times. To get more information, visit

Stage 3: Preparation

In this stage, the individual is developing a sense of urgency about their goal for sobriety. They’ve taken a few general steps toward action, such as visiting a counselor, deciding to join a gym, or attempting to leave addiction without the help of a treatment facility.

It’s common for people in this stage to go a day or two without using drugs or alcohol. However, it’s also common for them to return to contemplation or precontemplation if painful feelings or triggers surface.

Stage 4: Action

In this stage,  a real change begins in the patients’ behaviors. For most people, the action stage initiates in a detox or rehabilitation center, where clinical and medical specialists may guide them through the early phases of recovery.

A person will participate in therapy that addresses the fundamental causes of addiction at this stage. Individual and group therapy will also help people better understand their addiction and themselves, while alternative and complementary treatments can improve their overall wellbeing and recovery. 

The action stage will also provide a person with healthy, effective coping methods for stress and triggers. It will allow them to go through the maintenance stage without relapsing.

Stage 5: Maintenance And Relapse

Any change requires time and work to maintain. That’s why in the maintenance stage, a person begins to adjust to their new substance-free lifestyle. Reverting to previous behaviors becomes less of a threat as they gain traction.

On the other hand, drug abuse is a long-term illness. The danger of recurrence, like with other chronic conditions, is always present. Even if you learn the skills and tools you need to avoid relapse in the action stage, you may still relapse. 

It isn’t, however, an indication of inadequacy or weakness. It is possible to re-establish sobriety even if someone relapses in the maintenance stage, but they will need more specialized therapy to do so.

Stage 6: Termination

Termination is the final stage in the drug addiction recovery process. When a person with a drug abuse disorder no longer feels threatened by the drugs, they reach the termination stage. They are confident and comfortable living a life free of substances at this point, and they are fearful of relapse less and less each day.

The Relevance Of Aftercare

It’s important to note that just because someone has attained maintenance doesn’t imply they’re free of addiction. On the contrary, it’s a chronic ailment, similar to diabetes or heart disease, that demands considerable lifestyle modifications to manage. 

As a result, it’s critical for persons in addiction recovery to make ongoing active attempts to stay sober. For example, you can join a gym because there are several physical therapies that assist patients who have just come out of rehab.

Aftercare allows you to stay on track and put what you learned in recovery into practice. We recommend continuing in some type of aftercare for at least one or two years after completing a rehab program, whether individual counseling, support groups, physical therapies, or an outpatient treatment program.

Final Thoughts

To someone contemplating or is in the early stages of recovery, the stages of drug addiction recovery may appear frightening. However, knowing what to expect might help you progress through these stages with more confidence and reach the termination stage in the end. Therefore, permanent recovery is attainable, and the top Drug Detox Centers can assist you in getting there.