How Does Therapy for Alcohol Addiction Work?

It’s amazing to think there’s actually people out there in the world who live with an alcohol addiction for years. The toll it takes on their body, mind and soul must be devastating. Still, they awake everyday, pick up the bottle and start the whole alcoholism cycle all over again, day after day. Predictably, most people are not able to live their lives like that for very long. Eventually, they hit what experts refer to as “rock bottom,” a point in time when the addiction sufferer reaches the crossroads and needs to make a decision.

If the choose to keep drinking, they run the risk of ending up in prison, insane or dead. Those are not good options. There’s another choice all addiction sufferers have at their disposal. They can decide to surrender the fort, admit they have a problem and ask someone to give them help. As a caring community, we collectively pray that everyone with a drinking problem will choose this option. If they do, they have officially taken the first step in the addiction recovery process.

How Does Therapy for Alcohol Addiction Work?

For the person who has never undergone addiction treatment, the thought of entering a drug and alcohol rehab can be very intimidating. It’s difficult for people to give up any portion of their freedom, even if doing so will deliver them a better life. The thing that’s so intimidating about getting treatment is it’s very hard to know what to expect. The best way to eliminate the anxiety someone feels when facing the unknown it to turn the unknown in the known. In an effort to describe how the alcohol addiction treatment process works, it’s important that the addiction sufferer understands that treatment is going to take a little time.

They can expect to be in the inpatient facility for a minimum of 30 days. It’s not a prison. Unless they end up in treatment because of a court order, they are always free to leave. Of course, they will have to do so knowing their misery is going with them. If they stay and commit to the program, they can expect to go through three phases of treatment. That would include:

  • A detox program
  • Therapy and counseling
  • Aftercare and recovery maintenance

A Detox Program

After months or years of alcohol abuse, it’s not reasonable for a client to walk away from the bottle without the body and mind having an objection. In fact, those two entities, the body and mind, will have a very strong objection to being denied what they crave. That objection is what experts call withdrawal symptoms. Depending on the depth of the individual’s addiction, their withdrawal symptoms can be quite severe, at times putting the person’e health at risk. Here’s just a few of the possible withdrawal symptoms:

  • Breathing difficulties
  • Problems with heart rate and blood pressure
  • Tremors and convulsions, sometimes called the heebie jeebies
  • Sleeping difficulties
  • Sweating and body pain

A good detox program will help the client get past these symptoms with a minimum of discomfort. If relief medications become necessary, the rehab facility’s doctor always has the discretion to prescribe said medication.

Therapy and Counseling

After detox, the client will move on to the therapy portion of treatment. During the next 30 or so days, they will join forces with a therapist and go on a journey of self-discovery. The task at hand is simple, find the driving force behind the addiction. You have to know what’s broken in order to properly fix it. Fixing it means locating the source of the client’s triggers and developing the coping skills to combat those triggers when they appear.

Aftercare and Recovery Maintenance

Establishing recovery is one thing, maintaining it is quite another. Once a person leaves rehab, they are vulnerable to their old behaviors. If better coping skills is not enough to help them maintain control, clients will usually have access to aftercare resources. The most effective resources would be living in a sober environment for awhile, additional outpatient treatment and attending 12-Step meetings.

These are all good ways for someone in recovery to stay on the path of recovery. If your drinking problem is putting your very existence at risk, it’s time to break the cycle. You are now armed with the knowledge of what you can expect from treatment. All you have to do is want it and go get it. You can start by calling us at 844-639-8371.

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