Alcohol Detox: Dealing with Alcoholism

Photo credit: Bigstockphoto
Photo credit: Bigstockphoto

In the US alone, 22 million people are suffering from drug or alcohol addiction. Unfortunately, only 5% to 6% of these 22 million addicts will seek treatment.

One of the reasons why most alcoholics refuse help is because they do not admit that they have a problem. Alcoholism claims millions of lives each year. Alcoholism is a chronic disease associated with strong cravings and need for alcohol to get through the day. To deal with alcoholism, you’ll have to seek help from a certified doctor and check yourself in rehab.

Signs and Symptoms of Alcoholism

Physical Symptoms

  • Drinking to the point of blacking out
  • Mood swings
  • Increased tolerance to alcohol
  • Insomnia
  • Incessant craving for alcohol
  • Headaches from abstaining from alcohol

Social Signs of Alcoholism

  • Tardiness
  • Drinking in secret
  • Risky behavior
  • Continuous alcohol drinking
  • Frequent incidents of fighting or harming others while intoxicated

Helping an Alcoholic Check in Rehab

Most alcoholics are unwilling to get help because they don’t realize that they have a problem. It’s extremely unusual for an alcoholic to check himself in rehab without an intervention. It’s up to family members and loved ones to convince someone to check himself in rehab for alcohol detox.

Choosing a Detox Center

Consult Your Doctor

If your loved one is in dire need of help, ask your doctor what steps to take to rehabilitate the patient. Usually, doctors will recommend a detox or rehab center. Your doctor is the best person to ask because he is the one who is familiar with your loved one’s case.

Developing a Support System

A recovering alcoholic needs all the support to stay sober. You can help ease the detox process by giving your loved one a support system he can rely on. The detox process is the hardest part of the rehab program because it can result in alcohol withdrawal. At this point, the patient will experience severe nausea, tremors, vomiting and sometimes, hallucinations.

Types of Treatments

Some rehab centers offer in-patient treatments while others offer outpatient treatments. The kind of treatment you choose will depend on the severity of the addiction.

In-patient treatment entails 24/7 monitoring, assisted detox process, consultation and proper care in the center. This is suitable for heavy drinkers or severely addicted individuals. Because in-patient treatment is conducted inside the center, the patient is protected from outside influences that could trigger the need for alcohol.

Outpatient treatment features the same program but in a household environment. This program allows patients to continue with everyday tasks while staying in the program. Unlike in-patient treatment, out-patient treatment does not protect patients from outside influences that could cause a relapse. The patient is left to observe certain precautions to abstain from alcohol.

To know which type of treatment is suitable for you or your loved ones, we recommend consulting your doctor or a counseling professional. It also helps if the patient is honest with himself in terms of the level of control he has over his cravings. The personal circumstance of the patient should also be factored into the decision.