It can be difficult to recognize whether or not you are abusing alcohol. Some may believe, at least initially, that they are just "occasional" or "social" drinkers without realizing that they have begun to consume alcohol on a more frequent and even dangerous basis. Recognizing that you have a problem is a critical step in the road to recovery. There are a number of options available to treat alcohol addiction. Treatment programs generally last approximately one to three months, but programs that continue beyond 90 days tend to be more successful.
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What You Need to Know About Alcohol Addiction
Alcohol addiction is also known as alcohol dependence or alcoholism. It differs from alcohol abuse in that you not only have dangerous drinking habits, but you also crave alcohol and feel the need to drink in order to function. Alcohol addiction often develops slowly over time—what may have begun as occasional, social drinking builds up to more frequent alcohol use, eventually resulting in alcohol addiction. Alcoholism is a chronic disease that is influenced by many factors, such as genetics, environment, and psychological factors.
Treatment Options for Alcohol Addiction
Treatment options vary depending on your level of alcohol use. If you are addicted, you will likely need medical treatment and will require admittance to a hospital or treatment facility. In some cases, a doctor may prescribe medications to help ease withdrawal symptoms. Once you have detoxed, you will need additional treatment, such as group or individual therapy to help you deal with the emotional issues surrounding your addiction and to provide you with the tools to stay alcohol-free and sober. Treatment duration varies, but programs that extend beyond a few months tend to have higher success rates. Both out- and in-patient treatment options are available, depending on individual circumstances.
Post-Rehabilitation of Alcohol Addiction
It is important to pursue counselling and remain involved in support groups that specialize in post-rehabilitation for alcohol addiction. Once you have dealt with the physical symptoms of alcoholism, you will still need to address the emotional issues that led you to the dependency. Reaching out for help if you feel as if you might relapse is crucial; support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous, offer mentor services to give you additional encouragement and guidance. Also be sure to avoid subjecting yourself to situations where temptation is strong. Being honest with yourself and those around you will help your recovery tremendously. Recovery is a long-term process, but treatment and support will help you make the positive changes you need in order to turn your life around.
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