Alcohol addiction is very difficult to overcome. Alcohol consumption is generally considered by society as an acceptable practice. You can legally purchase alcoholic beverages. Drinking and buying alcohol is considered a rite-or-passage. Alcohol is readily available, easily accessible, and advertised constantly.
This makes an alcohol rehab, alcohol rehabilitation, or alcohol treatment program an important part of recovery from alcohol abuse and alcoholism. An alcohol rehab program will rid your body of the physical addiction of alcohol through a detoxification process. Then provide a safe and supportive environment to learn, conqueror and control the emotional and mental addiction to alcohol.
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Most individuals who use alcohol stop at the “experimental” or “recreational” stage. Who hasn’t had the occasional cocktail at a holiday party or had a few beers after work with friends/colleagues? However, for a variety of complex reasons, some individuals who use alcohol find that their use progresses to a more problematic phase referred to as substance abuse and addiction.
Alcoholism is composed of a complex set of behaviors in which an individual becomes increasingly preoccupied with obtaining alcohol. These behaviors ultimately lead to a total loss of control over consumption of alcohol to the development of tolerance, dependence, and impaired social and occupational functioning.
An addiction is a chronic medical illness that can be treated. Often, this addiction to alcohol is the result of some combination of genetic makeup, personal choice and environmental factors.
The good news is alcohol rehab is not only readily available, but also highly effective. Run by qualified, accredited and dedicated professionals, drug rehabs and addiction treatment services that meet rigorous standards are the backbone of the public health response needed to address this nationwide epidemic. There are a wide variety of treatment and recovery options available.
Because alcohol addiction is a chronic disorder characterized by occasional relapses, a short-term, one-time only treatment option is not sufficient. Alcohol addiction treatment is a long-term process that involves multiple interventions and attempts at abstinence. In addition to treating the physical addiction to alcohol via detoxification, alcohol rehab should also include behavioral therapy such as counseling, cognitive therapy, psychotherapy or any number of combination’s thereof. Alcohol addiction treatment may also involve medication, nutrition education and physical fitness routines.
Alcohol addiction treatment can be conducted inpatient dug rehab or outpatient treatment depending on the needs of the individual. During an in-patient drug rehab treatment for alcohol addiction, the individual will be expected to temporarily move into a residential or hospital-like treatment setting. Once admitted, the individual will be assessed and a treatment plan will be drawn up that focuses on the individual’s needs. The first step in an alcohol addiction treatment program is detoxification. During detoxification, the individual will experience symptoms of withdrawal, both physical and mental, while their body rids itself of toxins. The addict will be educated on their alcohol addiction and may work with professionals to establish a healthier lifestyle via nutrition education and exercise.
Once detoxification is complete, the individual will attend counseling sessions. These counseling sessions may be individual (meaning one on one with the therapist) and/or they may also be required to attend group counseling sessions with other alcohol addicted individuals who are undergoing treatment. Family therapy may also be a component during their recovery. Detoxification and counseling are key components of an alcohol rehab program.
During these counseling sessions, the addict will learn about their addiction and the effect that their addiction has on their body, their mind, their loved ones, etc. They will learn new coping techniques and mechanisms and develop strategies to help deal with any situations that may arise in which they may feel the need to use again.
Outpatient treatment facility centers are usually programs at an alcohol/drug rehab center, which do not require the individual to live in the setting but are by no means less structured. Outpatient treatment allows individuals to continue to work and live at home while their addiction issues are addressed in a less restrictive setting. Most outpatient treatment facilities offer day and evening program options where education and intensive counseling sessions are also stressed.
After the individual completes alcohol rehab, it is important that they continue their recovery by attending a community based recovery group, most often in the form of a 12-step recovery program. These community-based groups can complement and extend the effects of professional treatment by supporting individuals throughout their continued recovery. Just because they have completed their residential or in-patient/outpatient drug rehab does not mean that they are no longer an alcoholic. One of the first things alcoholics learn in recovery is that they are alcoholics for life.
Your alcohol addiction treatment specialist will be able to help you determine which type of treatment option would be best for you or your loved one.
What are the street names/slang terms for Alcohol?
What does it look like? Alcohol is used in liquid form. Alcohol comes in many different “flavors” and “strength”. The color and consistency of alcohol also varies from a clear liquid to a dark brown/ black color.
How is it used? Alcohol is a liquid and is ingested by drinking. Alcohol is served in a pure form, mixed with other types of alcohol, or mixed with other non-alcoholic liquids. Types include beer, wine, and liquor.
Alcohol is used cold, at room temperature, or heated. If you cook with alcohol, the alcohol will evaporate or burn off. Alcohol is a flammable liquid.
What are its short-term effects? When a person drinks alcohol, the alcohol is absorbed by the stomach, enters the bloodstream, and goes to all the tissues. As the blood alcohol content increases the individual thinking, language, balance, and motor skills are impaired. Many people report a pleasant or feeling of euphoria or calmness while drinking alcohol. If large quantities of alcohol are consumed an individual is no longer in control of behavior or actions, can get sick, “pass out”, or black out.
The effects of alcohol addiction, alcoholism, and social use are dependent on a variety of factors, including a person’s size, weight, age, and sex, as well as the amount of food and alcohol consumed. The un-inhibiting effect of alcohol is one of the main reasons it is used in so many social situations. Other effects of moderate alcohol intake includes dizziness and talkativeness; the immediate effects of a larger amount of alcohol include slurred speech, disturbed sleep, nausea, and vomiting. Alcohol, even at low doses, significantly impairs the judgment and coordination required to drive a car safely. Low to moderate doses of alcohol can also increase the incidence of a variety of aggressive acts, including domestic violence and child abuse. Hangovers are another possible effect after large amounts of alcohol are consumed; a hangover consists of headache, nausea, thirst, dizziness, and fatigue.
Long-term Alcohol Effects
Prolonged, heavy use of alcohol can lead to addiction (alcoholism). Sudden cessation of long term, extensive alcohol intake is likely to produce withdrawal symptoms, including severe anxiety, tremors, hallucinations and convulsions. Long-term effects of consuming large quantities of alcohol, especially when combined with poor nutrition, can lead to permanent damage to vital organs such as the brain and liver. In addition, mothers who drink alcohol during pregnancy may give birth to infants with fetal alcohol syndrome. These infants may suffer from mental retardation and other irreversible physical abnormalities. In addition, research indicates that children of alcoholic parents are at greater risk than other children of becoming alcoholics.
Alcohol is a Drug
Alcohol is a depressant, which slows down thinking and actions. It acts on the brain and affects all parts of the body. An average-size person’s liver can break down about one drink per hour; the rest of the alcohol circulates throughout the body, affecting behavior, judgment, perception, and motor skills – such as driving and operating machinery.
Alcohol Affects Each Individual Differently …Smaller-size people, women, younger or older people, and those who are ill will feel stronger effects from the same amount of alcohol than larger people, middle-aged adults, or people who are in good physical health. People with a history of alcoholism in their family may also be affected differently than people who have no history of alcoholism in their family.
Alcohol Abuse is a Health Risk… alcohol abuse can cause damage to many of the body’s organs. Researchers report damage to brain tissue, heart muscle, and reproductive organs in both males and females. Alcohol may cause the drinker’s blood pressure to rise, putting him or her at risk for heart attack and stroke. Stomach ulcers, poor nutrition and sexual dysfunction have all been related to alcohol abuse.
Alcohol Affects Driving Skills… Alcohol is involved in over half of the fatal car crashes in the U.S. Although many states consider a driver legally intoxicated when their Blood Alcohol Content reaches .10%, driving skills are affected at levels as low as .03%. This is especially true of younger drivers, who may be less experienced. Alcohol affects crucial driving skills like quick reflexes and vision.
Alcohol is Harmful to Unborn Babies… Alcohol consumed by a pregnant woman enters the bloodstream of the fetus she is carrying. Alcohol can affect the fetus in many ways: slowing both physical and mental growth before and after birth; causing severe physical malformations of the face and brain; creating learning disabilities or retardation. The safe choice is not to drink during pregnancy.
Alcohol Reacts with Other Drugs… Combining alcohol with certain over-the-counter or prescription drugs is dangerous. Drinking while taking medication may cause impairment of coordination, a sharp change in blood pressure, seizures, convulsions, and even death. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about how a certain medications reacts with alcohol before combining these two drugs.
Alcohol Abuse May Lead to Alcoholism… Drinking large enough amounts of alcohol over a period of time can produce alcoholism, a physical dependence on alcohol. People with a history of alcoholism in their family are at much greater risk of developing alcoholism themselves. Alcoholism is a treatable illness with drug rehab; family members and friends may need to obtain help, too.
More Facts… Alcoholism is one of the most serious public health problems in the US today. Among the 18.3 million adult “heavier drinkers,” 12.1 million have one or more symptoms of alcoholism, an increase of 8.2 percent since 1980.
- One out of three American adults -56 million Americans- says that alcohol abuse has brought trouble to his or her family.
- Chronic brain injury caused by alcohol is second only to Alzheimer’s disease as known cause of mental deterioration in adults.
- About 65 out of every 100 persons in the US will be in an alcohol-related crash at sometime in their life.
- Fifty-four percent of jail inmates convicted of violent crimes were drinking before they committed the offense.
- Over 80 percent of college presidents identify alcohol abuse as the biggest problem on campus.
- If a man and a woman of similar weight drink the same amount of alcohol, 30% more alcohol will enter the woman’s bloodstream, because women have less of a certain stomach enzyme that digests alcohol.