People drink because of various reasons. For some, it is the only way to suppress their uncomfortable thoughts and emotions, for others – it is the easiest solution to entertain themselves and relax. The lockdown that was meant to limit the spreading of the COVID-19 virus was just another trigger that allowed alcohol to become an integral part of the coping mechanism of many people.
But when drinking alcohol stops being an evening fun and turns into an alcohol dependence? If you have concerns about your own attitude to drinking or are worried about someone else, it is essential to know which signs to pay attention to. Those include planning events centred on the alcohol, feeling the need to drink in the morning, general compulsive need to stop being sober, and alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
If any of these seem to feel familiar, it is time to try to stop drinking alcohol. Below, you will find information about what to expect when you stop drinking and why you should consider looking for an alcohol rehab centre in the UK.
Pitfalls of Trying To Quit Drinking on Your Own
Dealing with a drinking problem requires implementing radical lifestyle changes, and handling this on your own may result in sticking to the usual drinking habits if you approach it only superficially. Even in the early stages, it is crucial to get as much information as possible and figure out what is causing your alcohol addiction.
It is recommended to avoid drinking cycles to prevent the development of alcohol addiction and build up of tolerance to alcohol. It is also a common way to stop drinking alcohol at all. However, it is vital to enlist external help from local support groups that usually operate according to The 12 Step recovery program.
However, trying to get rid of an alcohol addiction entails harsh consequences that can negatively affect a dependent person’s physical and mental health. Those are called alcohol withdrawal symptoms and occur when alcohol is cut back suddenly. Such symptoms include:
- excessive sweating;
- hand tremors;
- visual hallucinations;
- increased anxiety levels and restlessness;
- sleeping disorders (insomnia).
For these reasons, it is challenging to deal with alcohol problems and keep long-term motivation when cutting back alcohol abruptly and overcoming it independently. Ensuring the support of a loved one alongside professional advice on addiction treatment are the very first steps to a sober life.
Professional Alcohol Addiction Treatment
There is a common but misleading association of rehab centres with “care homes” or even hospitals, and for many people, just thought of seeking professional support may be unbearable. At this point, it is crucial to understand that alcohol abuse is a complex problem that requires a holistic approach, and a desire to quit drinking is essential, but not enough. If you feel that you cannot resist an urge to drink, consider getting help in a rehab centre, but search close to your living area, so that your family and friends might visit you easily.
Overall rehab models and long-term recovery programs may vary from one rehab centre to another, but still, they include some standard but necessary treatment techniques. Usually, a recovery journey consists of the most efficient parts of The 12 Step method supported by professional help, which includes:
- Detoxification. With the help of medicines, toxic substances are removed from the body dependent on alcohol. It enables getting rid of the alcohol withdrawal symptoms and eliminates the feeling of being physically attracted to alcohol.
- Independent living. The dependent lives in a suburb rehab centre and together with other people undergoes a complex psycho-social recovery. During individual and group sessions with psychotherapists, they learn about alcoholism and addiction mechanisms, learn to control emotions, and cope with stressful situations without alcohol. In support groups, residents also learn how to resolve conflicts and gain healthy social communication skills. Recovery also affects dependents’ personal development: they learn about self-realization and ways to develop their creative and intellectual potential.
- Ambulatory treatment. The centre’s resident returns to living at home and learns to put into practice the knowledge and skills acquired in the rehab centre. A person regularly attends sessions with a psychotherapist that help quickly adapt to a sober life in society, and a regular examination by a narcologist prevents a possible relapse.
- Resocialization. Under the guidance of psychologists, a person returns to normal life in society: establishes alcohol-free relationships with loved ones, relatives, and friends, rebuilds a career, learns to spend time without drinking alcohol.
An abusive relationship with alcohol negatively impacts both physical and mental health; that’s why it is vital to ensure comprehensive support at every stage of a recovery process.
Like any other drug use, alcohol consumption develops exponentially, as the more alcohol you drink, the more your body expects to get next time to have the same effect. It causes a devastating impact on your physical health, involving mental issues as well. It is vital to find a complex approach to dealing with this type of self-destructive behaviour.
If you or someone close to you struggles with alcohol addiction, it is crucial to start from figuring out what issues hide behind such a coping mechanism. It is equally important not to perceive yourself as broken as well as trying to fix something but to move forward relying on your life values and future goals.