If you have a psychiatric disability, you will likely experience periods of remission, or times when your symptoms are not present. Sometimes symptoms of your psychiatric disability may be mild or moderate. At other times, you will find that these symptoms intensify and become severe. We call that period of severe symptoms a relapse. Relapse is defined as “an exacerbation or intensification of symptoms severe enough to interfere with daily living activities.” When you have a relapse, it can also be said that you are experiencing an acute episode of your psychiatric disability. Relapse prevention is when a person with a psychiatric disability actively prevents a relapse from occurring. Researchers have determined that most relapses can be predicted and prevented. People with psychiatric disabilities often prevent relapses by developing relapse prevention plans when they are experiencing no or mild symptoms. We will talk more about relapse prevention plans in this module.
Mental Health and Parenting: Self-care, Relapse Prevention and Crisis Planning