Malankara World


Sobriety Maintenance: 5 Tips to Stay Safe and Sober

by: Jane Derry

In recovery, only one thing has to change, but that is everything. And everything is included in everything. Spirituality, emotionality and mentality are addressed in other articles. This article is purely about the material and physical.

5 Tips to guard sobriety:

1. Mouthwash

Make sure that your mouthwash does not contain alcohol. Read the label carefully before purchase, and check the bottles in your bathroom. If they contain alcohol, throw them out! It isn't worth the risk. The taste and smell are triggers that you may not even be aware of while gargling, but your disease knows, and will take advantage of your vulnerability.

2. Cough Syrups

Same as with mouthwash, check all the labels before you buy, many cough syrups do contain alcohol. Cough suppressants may also contain narcotics, such as codeine. If you are in doubt, ask your pharmacist to verify the product is narcotic free. Many people in recovery have relapsed by naively using cough syrups, and triggering a craving. That almost happened to Bill W. himself.

3. Hair Products and After Shave

In early recovery you just can't be too careful. Think about using a gel or hairspray, or aftershave lotion containing alcohol. All your senses will be encased in the cloud of alcohol fumes. Don't risk triggering a craving, just to use a certain product. There are many alternatives to alcohol based products.

4. Menu Items at Restaurants

It seems that the more expensive and fancy the restaurant is, the more likely dishes contain alcohol. Read the description carefully before ordering. If there is booze in it, don't order it. If your server tells you not to worry, that the alcohol is cooked off, don't risk it! Is your sobriety worth the Coq au Vin? Let your server know that you have a deadly allergy to alcohol. By using the word 'allergy' in a restaurant, you will be taken very seriously.

5. Someone Offers You a Drink

This can be really scary in early sobriety. Don't be caught off guard. Here are some possible answers:

No thanks, I'm not drinking today.

No thanks, I'm allergic to alcohol. When I drink, I break out in spots. Like Vancouver, Calgary, Hawaii...

No thanks, you don't have enough here for me.

No thanks, I don't want to vomit on you.

No thanks, but I'll take the money instead.

Seriously though, have an answer ready. Usually "No thanks" by itself is enough. You don't have to explain anything to anybody. And besides, you'll quickly find out that most people don't care or notice. It isn't all about you:)

Early sobriety can be a heady exciting time. Just remember that alcohol is a subtle foe, you must be vigilant, and keep yourself safe at all times. Soon enough, it will just become habit and second nature.

If sobriety doesn't come first, nothing comes second.

See Also:

s There A Treatment For Alcohol Addictions?
If you drink alcohol frequently then you could have alcohol addictions. These addictions are one of the hardest to eliminate. The causes are deep seated emotional problems. To end drinking, requires a strong will and a good method or process that you can follow.

Stay Sober: 5 Tips for the Holiday Season in Recovery
Here are 5 tips to help you maintain your sobriety as the holidays approach. If you are an alcoholic, getting sober is one of the hardest things you may ever do, staying sober will be the hardest, and you need all the help you can get. Read these tips, one of them may just save your life.

5 Drink Suggestions for People in Early Recovery
You've gotten sober, and the inevitable will eventually happen. You will be at a function, or restaurant, and you will be asked, "What can I get you to drink?" Anyone who is a social drinker will likely wonder why they are reading this article at this point, but alcoholics in recovery understand. This can be a life-threatening question!

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About the Author:

My name is Jane Derry and I am an addiction recovery specialist, find out more about what I do at

Rethinking Rehab. Addiction recovery, it is not what you think. A Home Away Retreat is a unique opportunity for people in early sobriety to heal, and learn the tools to live the life they desire and deserve, sober.

Jane's Mission: Through my commitment to live by spiritual principles, it is my intention to model and inspire hope and encouragement to people, especially to those suffering from the disease of addiction.

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