==== ====Please call this number 24/7 if you have questions about a drug or alcohol problem or if you wantsome information about drug or alcohol treatment. (888) 565-2282http://www.Alcohol-Treatment-Info.com==== ====Not unlike other diseases and illnesses, alcoholism can be overcome with prevention, professionalalcohol treatment, and increased research efforts. As serious as alcohol dependence is,fortunately it can be treated. Keep in mind, however, that this does not mean that there is a curefor alcohol addiction.What it does mean, however that if alcohol treatment is received early enough in the disease, theperson can usually attain sobriety and start on the road to alcohol recovery. Alcohol treatmentprograms usually use a combination of doctor prescribed medications and counseling to help anindividual stop drinking.Not only this, but most forms of alcohol treatment take place in an alcohol rehab hospital, drug andalcohol rehabilitation clinic, or an alcohol treatment center. Frequently, the first step utilized in thetreatment of alcohol addiction is detoxification, a process which lets the body rid itself of alcoholwhile controlling the alcohol withdrawal symptoms in a harm-free environment.While detoxification is a necessary first step, much more is involved in the alcohol treatmentprocess than detoxification.An Essential But Basic Question: What is Alcoholism?Alcoholism, also known as alcohol dependence and alcohol addiction, is an increasinglydegenerative disease that includes the following four symptoms.* Craving: having a strong urge or need to drink.* Physical dependence: withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety, headaches, nausea, perspiration,and the shakes when suddendly quitting drinking.* Tolerance: the need to drink greater amounts of alcohol in order to feel a buzz or to get high.* Loss of control: an inability to stop drinking after the first drink.Alcoholic SymptomsConcerning alcoholic symptoms (also called alcoholism symptoms by some people), it is importantto point out that social, psychological, and spiritual alcoholic symptoms can be just as painful andproblematic as the better-known physical alcoholic symptoms.Alcoholic symptoms affect alcoholics when they drink, when they try to quit drinking, when they gothrough the sobriety and recovery process and, unfortunately, when they go through alcohol
withdrawal symptoms. When discussing the topic of alcoholic symptoms, keep the following inmind.First, alcoholism leads to a series of painful and destructive emotional, spiritual, social, andphysical symptoms that will get progressively worse unless the alcoholic quits drinking.Second, an important step in the recovery process is acknowledging that drinking has become aproblem and having the desire and the motivation to stop drinking.Third, once the alcoholic reaches this point, the next issue to resolve is how to best handle thealcohol withdrawal symptoms that typically follow. According to medical research, everyone whoexperiences alcohol withdrawal symptoms needs to get professional alcohol treatment.Fourth, the most effective and logical way to deal with ones alcohol withdrawal symptoms is toimmediately see a doctor or healthcare provider so that he or she can evaluate the severity of theyour drinking problem and suggest the most effective form of treatment.Treatment for Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse: An OverviewSimilar to other diseases and medical conditions, alcoholism can be overcome with proper alcoholtreatment, prevention, and increased research.By providing more individuals with access to quality treatment for alcohol abuse and alcoholism,the costly drain on society and the financial, emotional, and physical burdens this disease placeson families can be reduced to a great extent.Indeed, research has shown irrefutable evidence that successful prevention and professionalalcohol and treatment programs result in significant reductions in child abuse, HIV, heart disease,strokes, crime, unwanted pregnancy, traffic fatalities, and cancer.Furthermore, quality drug and alcohol treatment improves health, job performance, and quality oflife while at the same time reducing family dysfunction, drug use, and involvement with the criminaljustice system.The treatment for alcohol dependency usually employs a combination of counseling and alcoholtreatment medications to help a person refrain from drinking.Even though most alcoholics need professional assistance in order to recover from their disease,research has revealed that with support and alcohol treatment, many individuals are able toabstain from drinking and reclaim their lives.Does this mean that there is a cure for alcohol addiction? Unfortunately, the medical communityhas not yet developed a cure for alcohol addiction. Thats the bad news. The good news, however,is this: if the disease is treated early enough, alcohol recovery is a definite possibility.In short, while the negative terms that are associated with "alcohol" are many, a more positiveassociation of terms includes the phrase "alcohol and treatment" mainly because with treatment,an individual can overcome alcohol abuse or alcoholism and start on the road to alcohol recovery.
Alcohol Treatment: Alcohol Withdrawal SymptomsWhen the terms alcohol and treatment are discussed, one of the first things that comes to mindconcerns alcohol withdrawal symptoms. When an alcoholic abruptly quits drinking alcohol, he orshe usually suffers from alcohol withdrawal symptoms such as depression, headaches, rapid heartrate, and feeling nervous.Even with professional treatment, these symptoms may take days or weeks before the bodyreturns to "normal."A number of various techniques exist for treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms. While many, if notmost of these treatment approaches use medications, a number of alcohol therapies, conversely,do not.Indeed, according to current research findings, the safest way to treat mild alcohol withdrawalsymptoms is without medications.Such non-drug detoxification programs use screening and extensive social support throughout theentire withdrawal process. Other non-drug detoxification therapies, additionally, use propernutrition and vitamin therapy (especially thiamin) when treating mild withdrawal symptoms.Mild to Moderate Alcohol Withdrawal SymptomsThe following represents mild to moderate physical alcohol withdrawal symptoms that typicallytake place within 6 to 48 hours after the last alcoholic drink:* Vomiting* Rapid heart rate* Clammy skin* Sweating (especially on the palms of the hands or on the face)* Sleeping difficulties* Abnormal movements* Tremor of the hands* Loss of appetite* Looking pale* Nausea* Involuntary movements of the eyelids
* Enlarged or dilated pupils* Pulsating headachesSevere Alcohol Withdrawal SymptomsThe following is a list of severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms that usually occur within 48 to 96hours after the last alcoholic drink:* Black outs* Fever* Convulsions* Delirium tremens (DTs)* Seizures* Severe autonomic nervous system overactivity* Visual hallucinations* Muscle tremorsTraditional Forms of Treatment for Alcohol Abuse and AlcoholismThere are numerous traditional alcohol treatment methodologies that are relatively wellestablished and considered "mainstream" therapies.The following alcohol treatments and programs, all of which are considered "traditional"approaches, will be discussed: Detoxification, Behavioral Treatment, Therapeutic Medications,Outpatient Alcoholism Treatment and Counseling, Residential Alcoholism Treatment Programsand Inpatient Alcohol Rehab, and Family and Marital Counseling.It might be pointed out that most of these traditional approaches are undertaken in an alcoholtreatment center, rehab hospital, or a drug and alcohol rehabilitation clinic.In short, the treatment of alcohol addiction consists of a wide variety of approaches that have beenrelatively successful in helping people stop drinking and start on the road to alcohol recovery.Alcohol DetoxificationAlcohol detoxification is the process of letting the body rid itself of alcohol while managing thealcohol withdrawal symptoms in a safe environment.Alcohol detoxification treatment is usually done under the supervision of a medical practitioner and
is frequently the first step employed in an alcohol and treatment program.Behavioral TreatmentsBehavioral treatments such as Motivation Enhancement Therapy, Alcoholics Anonymous, andCognitive Behavioral Therapy are often employed in the treatment of alcohol addiction.A study administered by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism found that each ofthese behavioral treatment therapies significantly reduced drinking in patients the year aftertreatment.Although all of these programs were considered "successful," none of them was classified as "thebest" alcohol treatment program.Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)Alcoholics Anonymous is a mutual support program for recovering alcoholics that is based on the12-steps of recovery that are used to stay sober. Help and support are provided by the regularlyscheduled meetings.Is Alcoholics Anonymous the best form of alcohol treatment? While Alcoholics Anonymous is aneffective therapeutic approach, most practitioners outside of Alcoholics Anonymous, as well asmany people inside Alcoholics Anonymous, believe that Alcoholics Anonymous works best whencombined with other forms of treatment such as medical care and/or psychotherapy.Motivation Enhancement Therapy (MET)Motivation Enhancement Therapy (MET) is a systematic therapeutic approach that is almost 180degrees different from Alcoholics Anonymous in that it uses motivational strategies to activate theclients own change mechanisms.Some of important characteristics of MET regarding the treatment of alcohol dependency are thefollowing:* Providing the client with a number of alternative change options* Receiving clear advice to make healthy changes* Emphasis on taking personal responsibility for positive change* Therapist empathy* Providing feedback regarding the personal risks or damage associated with the abuse* Helping the client achieve self-efficacy or a sense of optimismCognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
There are several forms of cognitive behavior therapy. Most of them, however, when focusing onalcohol and treatment have the following commonalties:* CBT approaches are based on the cognitive model of emotional response. That is, if we changethe way we think, we can act and feel better, even if the situation doesnt change.* CBT uses the Socratic Method that is based on the asking of questions for insight.* CBT is based on stoic philosophy. CBT does not tell clients how they should feel. Rather, thisform of therapy focuses on helping clients learn how to think more logically and effectively.* CBT theory and techniques rely on the Inductive Method. This method has clients look at theirthoughts as hypotheses (or suggested explanations) that can be tested and questioned. If clientsdiscover that their hypotheses are incorrect, they can then change their thoughts and feelings tobe more in line with reality.* In CBT, a solid therapeutic relationship is necessary but not the primary focal point for effectivetherapy.* CBT is structured and directive.* CBT is a mutually shared effort between the therapist and the client.* CBT is based on an educational model that views most emotions and behavioral reactions aslearned responses. Thus, the therapeutic goal is to help the client unlearn undesirable reactionsand emotions and replace them with new and more positive ways of feeling and reacting.* CBT usually has therapeutic sessions that are briefer and fewer in number than most other formsof therapy.* Homework is a central feature of CBT.* CBT is based on stoic philosophy. CBT does not tell clients how they should feel. Rather, thisform of therapy focuses on helping clients learn how to think more logically and effectively.Therapeutic MedicationsThe treatment of alcohol addiction from this therapeutic framework centers on medications that areprescribed by medical doctors to treat alcohol dependency or severe cases of alcohol abuse.Many alcohol substance abuse scientists and practitioners claim that chronic alcoholics whocannot maintain sobriety should receive doctor-prescribed medications to treat and manage theiralcohol withdrawal symptoms.Another major benefit of this form of medications-focused treatment is that people who are alcoholdependent are less likely to experience seizures and/or possible brain damage when they receivetherapeutic medications for their addiction.
The BenzodiazepinesAlcohol addiction researchers have recently discovered that the benzodiazepines are themedications most likely o produce positive results when treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms.Examples include the longer-acting benzodiazepines such as Librium and Valium and the shorter-acting benzodiazepines such as Serax and Ativan.Traditionally, when medical practitioners used benzodiazepines, they used a progressive decreasein doses over the time-frame of the withdrawal process.Intermediate To Short Half-Life BenzodiazepinesA number of alcoholism practitioners and scientists have found that intermediate to short half-lifebenzodiazepines should be used when treating withdrawal symptoms.These alcoholism professionals made their decision based on the following two points. First, theshorter-acting benzodiazepines do not remain in the persons blood for an excessive period oftime.And second, the shorter-acting benzodiazepines can be administered via measurable andobservable dose reductions.Medications To Prevent Alcohol RelapseAnother facet of alcoholism treatment with therapeutic medications focuses on different drugssuch as disulfiram (Antabuse) or naltrexone (ReViaT that are prescribed by a health careprofessional to help prevent the individual from returning to drinking after he or she hasexperienced a relapse.In a word, in this treatment approach, doctors prescribe various drugs to treat a persons addiction.For instance, antabuse produces negative effects such as flushing, dizziness, vomiting or nauseaif the alcoholic ingests alcohol.Needless to say, antabuse is effective mainly because it is such a strong deterrent. Naltrexone(ReViaT), conversely, is effective because it targets the brains reward circuits and reduces thecraving the alcoholic has for alcohol.Outpatient Alcoholism Treatment and CounselingThere are various approaches to counseling that teach alcoholics how to become aware of thepsychological and situational "triggers" of their problem drinking.Armed with this information, alcoholics can then learn about different ways in which they can copewith situations that do not include the use of alcohol. These types of alcohol treatmentmethodologies, unlike detox therapies, are usually offered on an outpatient basis.
Residential Alcohol Treatment Programs and Inpatient Alcohol RehabIf theres a need for alcohol AND drug abuse treatment, if the persons withdrawal symptoms areexcessive, if a person needs alcohol poisoning treatment, of if outpatient and support-orientedprograms such as Alcoholics Anonymous are ineffective, the person usually needs to enroll into arehab hospital or a residential alcohol treatment center and receive inpatient alcohol rehabtreatment.Such alcohol and treatment programs are usually geared for alcoholic inpatients and typicallyinclude doctor-prescribed medications to help the alcoholic get through detox and alcoholwithdrawal treatment in a harmless manner.Family and Marital CounselingSince the recovery process is so intimately related to the support the person receives from his orher family, a number of alcohol and treatment programs include marital and family counseling asessential aspects in the treatment protocol.Such therapeutic programs, furthermore, may also provide alcoholics with essential communityresources, such as childcare courses, job training, legal assistance, parenting classes, andfinancial management classes.Alternative Alcohol Treatment TherapiesAlthough the research findings are unclear, there are some alternative treatment approaches foralcohol abuse and alcoholism that are becoming more widely used and "mainstream."There are various therapeutic approaches that are viewed as "natural" forms of alcohol treatmentand include the following: the naturalistic and holistic approaches used by Traditional ChineseMedicine, "Drumming out Drugs" (a form of therapy that employs the use of drumming by clients),and various vitamin and supplement therapies.As promising as these alternative therapies are, more research is required in order to establishtheir effectiveness and to determine if they provide long-term alcohol treatment success.Alcoholism and DepressionWhile on the topic of alcoholism treatment, it is noteworthy to point out that according to thealcohol abuse and alcoholism research literature, alcoholism and depression frequently occur inthe same individual.This may indeed be associated with the fact that alcohol is a depressant and therefore may be areason why so many individuals get depressed when they drink in a hazardous and irresponsiblemanner.In any event, various research studies stress the point that the individual needs to get qualitytreatment for both medical conditions if he or she exhibits alcoholism and depression.
A Cure for Alcohol Addiction?Regrettably, the medical community has not yet created a cure for alcohol addiction. In mostinstances of alcoholism, is this really a huge issue? Stated another way, with the advancement ofalcohol treatment within the past ten years, would a cure for alcohol addiction accomplishsignificantly more that professional alcohol treatment if the disease is treated early enough?In other words, if alcoholics truly want to recover from their addiction, then they need to getimmediate alcohol treatment before the disease gets out of control and is basically unmanageable.And if alcohol recovery is attainable for the vast majority of alcoholics, doesnt this somewhatmake the need for a cure for alcohol addiction less urgent?Alcohol Treatment: ConclusionIn spite of the fact that a cure for alcohol addiction has not been discovered, various drug andalcohol treatment approaches however, have been developed that help individuals recover fromalcoholism. In a word, there is a multitude of alcohol and treatment information that is available,both offline and online.As a result of this information, alcoholism practitioners currently have access to a wide range ofalcohol treatment approaches for their patients.Some of the methodologies regarding the treatment for alcohol abuse and alcoholism, such as 12-step self-help programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, for instance, have been around a relativelylong period of time.Other approaches pertaining to the treatment for alcohol dependency and alcohol abuse, includingbrief alcohol intervention and different protocols based on fields other than alcoholism, such ascouples therapy and motivational enhancement therapy, are basically new approaches in alcoholtreatment that have demonstrated effectiveness in reducing the risk for alcohol-related problems.The major change that has taken place in the treatment for alcohol addiction and for alcoholabuse, however, has been the introduction of alcoholism clinical research. Indeed, for the past 10or 15 years, this area of research has made substantial progress toward a thorough assessmentof both existing alcohol-related treatment approaches and more recent methodologies.Commonly, the first step employed in the treatment of alcoholism is detoxification, a process whichrids the body of alcohol while managing the alcohol withdrawal symptoms in a safe environment.While detoxification is a necessary first step, significantly more is involved in the alcohol treatmentprocess than detoxification.Continued research on alcohols effects in the brain and on the connection between the brain andbehavior, an area of research that has led to the creation of drugs to reduce craving, is expectedto arm alcohol practitioners with an extensive scope of highly specific drugs that will, whenemployed in combination with various behavioral treatment approaches, improve the likelihood foralcohol recovery and, as a consequence, help those who suffer from alcohol abuse andalcoholism to restore their lives.
Alcohol is a depressant and not a stimulant as claimed by many people who believe that drinkinghelps them "unwind" and become more energized in social circumstances. It is this fact, however,that may help explain the fairly typical occurrence of alcoholism and depression in the sameperson.What is more, according to alcohol abuse and alcoholism research, when a person displaysalcoholism and depression, it is vital for the individual to get treatment for both of these medicalconditions. As a final note, most types of alcohol treatment approach are undertaken in aresidential or outpatient alcohol treatment center, rehab hospital, or a drug and alcoholrehabilitation clinic.In these treatment facilities, a persons alcoholic symptoms can be identified, monitored, andtreated in an effective and safe manner.==== ====Please call this number 24/7 if you have questions about a drug or alcohol problem or if you wantsome information about drug or alcohol treatment. (888) 565-2282http://www.Alcohol-Treatment-Info.com==== ====