Alcoholism is a chronic disease with the potential for relapse. The main characteristics of alcoholism are the inability to stop drinking even though you want to, the presence of withdrawal symptoms when you withhold from drinking, and continuing to drink even though it’s causing serious physical, legal, financial, and/or relationship problems. Alcoholism treatment is essential for safe withdrawal and for helping to ensure you learn critical skills for beating your addiction.
Alcoholism treatment is a three-phase process that begins with detoxing the body of alcohol, continues on to the treatment phase, which involves a number of therapies, and ends with an individualized aftercare program to help prevent relapse. Alcoholism Treatment Centers Syosset offers both inpatient and outpatient programs, and choosing a holistic, individualized treatment program can help increase your chances of successful long-term recovery.
You can abuse alcohol without becoming addicted to it, although alcohol abuse can lead to an addiction as well as risky behaviors and physical illnesses. There are a couple of important distinctions between dependence and abuse.
Alcohol abuse is often marked by binge drinking, which most often occurs among young adults. Binge drinking for women means consuming more than four drinks in a two hour period and five drinks during that time for men. Blacking out is another common result of alcohol abuse, characterized by drinking in large quantities, resulting in the person being unable to recall certain details of events that happened while under the influence.
One of the most important factors that distinguishes abuse from addiction is the presence of withdrawal symptoms that occur when you stop drinking, indicating that your body is dependent on the substance.
Signs of alcohol addiction are objective indicators that others can see, such as yellowed skin due to liver problems. Symptoms are subjective indicators that the person with an addiction feels, such as the loss of control over drinking.
Signs and symptoms that you or someone you know may be addicted to alcohol include:
• Increased tolerance that requires more alcohol to get the same effects.
• Withdrawal symptoms when alcohol wears off.
• Loss of control over the amount you drink or the frequency of your drinking.
• Having the desire to stop drinking but being unable to do so.
• Neglecting responsibilities at home, work, and/or school.
• Spending a lot of time thinking about drinking, drinking, and recovering from drinking.
• Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed.
• Continuing to drink despite consequences like legal, relationship, and financial troubles.
Alcohol abuse and addiction can cause chronic diseases and mental health problems, including:
• Heart disease and liver disease
• High blood pressure and stroke
• A number of cancers, including breast, liver, and colon
• Learning and memory problems
• Depression and anxiety
Treatment programs for alcohol addiction begin with the detox process, during which medications may be used to help prevent the painful and often dangerous, or even fatal symptoms of withdrawal. Symptoms of withdrawal may include tremors, hallucinations, seizures, confusion, depression, and insomnia.
Both inpatient and outpatient alcohol addiction treatment programs offer comprehensive treatment therapies after the detox process is complete. Treatment typically includes these research-based therapies:
• Cognitive-behavioral therapy to help replace destructive thoughts and actions with healthy ones, identify and avoid triggers, and cope with stress and cravings.
• Contingency management therapy to provide extrinsic (external) motivations for staying sober by offering tangible rewards for abstaining, meeting goals, and attending meetings.
• Motivational interviewing to help the patient identify his or her own intrinsic (internal) motivations for wanting to beat the addiction and to resolve any ambivalence about recovery.
• Family therapy to help repair relationships damaged by alcohol addiction, rebuild trust, and improve communication among family members for a healthy home environment.
Getting professional help for an alcohol addiction vastly improves the chances of long-term recovery. A comprehensive aftercare program that follows treatment will help ensure continued support as you gain confidence in your ability to stay sober and learn to enjoy life without alcohol. Call Alcohol Treatment Centers Syosset today at 631-729-7250 and break the cycle of abuse and addiction.