The 5 Core Phases of Addiction Recovery

The 5 Core Phases of Addiction Recovery

It is difficult to witness a loved one struggling with addiction. People who don’t have an addiction find it hard to understand the behaviors of the individual going through substance abuse. However, behavior is part of the cycle of addiction, as well as of recovery.

The Jellinek Curve represents the five phases of addiction and recovery, which traces the progression of addiction from occasional or recreational use to full blown addiction and finally to rehab and recovery. There are no rigid timelines to these phases, as it all depends on the individual. However, the phases occur in order.

Phase One – Progressive

This is the first, beginning phase where the individual starts using drugs or alcohol recreationally or as a way to cope with the stresses they feel in their daily lives. Eventually, the individual starts building up their tolerance to the drugs or alcohol, thus leading them to take even more of the substance so they can feel the same effects as they used to. This is also when the individual first experiences a sense of guilt about their substance abuse.

Phase Two – Crucial

Steadily increasing drinking and drug use marks the second phase. The individual has now probably reached the point where they are unable to moderate or totally stop their substance use. They might have attempted to stop several times, but not succeeded. This phase is also when the individual begins to isolate themselves, away from family and friends and justifies their drug use or drinking.

Phase Three – Chronic

In the chronic phase of addiction and recovery, the individual probably experiences long periods of being intoxicated or high on drugs, as well as seeing serious physical and psychological health issues. The individual has likely stopped spending any time with family and friends and is spending the majority of their time with people who also indulge in substance abuse. They are driven by achieving the next high and they have little or no motivation beyond that. In this stage the individual has possibly also attempted stopping and failed.

Phase Four – Rehabilitation

When the individual hits rock bottom in their addiction they may have a moment of total clarity when they decide to stop using substances. This is when the individual enters the rehabilitation phase and seek out professional help. Usually they will go to a rehabilitation center to get clean and come to an understanding that addiction is complex and start getting assistance to address and overcome their substance abuse issues. The individual also gets involved in 12 Step programs or other support groups and and is exposed to resources that will help them maintain their sobriety in recovery.

Phase Five – Recovery

This is the final phase. In recovery the individual starts utilizing the tools and support they have received while in treatment and from others like themselves to grow in their sobriety. Now is the time when the individual re establishes communication and relationships that they might have damaged during their addiction with family and friends, as well as establishing new, healthy relationships with people who support their sober lifestyle. The individual becomes more confident and develops self esteem as well as an awareness of the needs and feelings of their loved ones.

Do you know someone who is struggling with addiction. Blueprints offers individualized programs to help resolve addictive behaviors. Call us now to get your loved one started on the path to recovery. 877-594-4901.


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