What Does It Mean to Live a Life in Remission From Addiction?

Living a life remission from addictionA term often used in contexts related to cancer, remission is defined by the National Cancer Institute as

“A decrease in or disappearance of signs and symptoms of [a condition].”

The term ‘remission’ is also used widely with addiction, because it is considered a disease of the mind, body and spirit. Those in active addiction experience signs and symptoms that cannot simply cease; in fact, many with addiction attempt to stop, only to find that their efforts fail. This is because addiction is a powerful disease that requires much more tools, resources and support to help a person recover. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) emphasizes that in order for those in recovery to achieve a state of remission, they must remain actively involved in their recovery. This may include:

  • Attending 12-Step meetings, such as through Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA)
  • Meeting regularly with a therapist
  • Participating in group therapy sessions
  • Maintaining contact with a 12-Step sponsor
  • Engaging in spiritual recovery practices, such as prayer, meditation, yoga, etc.
  • And more

A life of remission from addiction is ultimately a life of sobriety, and it is during this time that a person has worked so hard for an enriching life filled with balance, connection and hope. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) notes that by the state of remission, a person is likely to experience improved mind and body functioning, with more control over their cravings and triggers. In essence, remission takes a lot of time and dedication in recovery – but it’s absolutely worth it.

One person shared their personal experience with remission from addiction via the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). They explained that ever since they started living a life of sobriety, their voice has become stronger in standing up for themselves, their values, their happiness and health. In a very powerful statement, they stated:

“I know that each morning, when I wake up, there is only going to be one person who will never go away from me – and that person is myself.”

Start working towards a lifestyle of sobriety today. It’s never too late.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.