Alcohol Treatment Centers
The management of alcohol addiction always starts with detoxification.
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, less than 7% of the 16.6 million adults who are diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder attempt to seek treatment. Many experts believe the number of people who have an alcohol use disorder is actually much larger, but is under reported due to underreporting and the tendency of the affected individuals to hide their problem. On the bright side, one out of three individuals who seek alcohol addiction treatment remain sober for at least a year.
A Look at Alcohol Addiction
The main active ingredient in alcohol is ethanol, which is well known for its mind-altering capabilities. The effects it exhibits on the body of similar to those of other psychoactive and addictive substances. Inhibiting the neurotransmitters in the brain, the frequent consumption of alcohol throws off the mental rewards system of the brain. Normally, the reward system transmits a pleasure signal after the satisfaction of a human need, such as: eating food, drinking fluids, and making friends.
Alcohol and other addictive substances disrupt this normal reward system by bombarding the pleasure receptors with their own signals. Effectively, removing the standard transmission and reception of reward signals. Because these chemicals overstimulate the reward system, they produce a variety of euphoric feelings, and imprint them in the subconscious. This imprinted effect triggers the addiction craving for alcohol, directing the brain to get more alcohol. If more alcohol is not obtainable, the brain goes into a panic, this is also imprinted in the subconscious. Thus, the subconscious hold two important impressions about alcohol; alcohol brings pleasure, and no alcohol brings panic.
Alcohol addiction is affected by the development of tolerance to the substance, and dependence on the substance. Tolerance to the substance is developed as the body begins to get used to the quantity and frequency of use of the substance. The body will begin to feel less of the pleasurable effect, causing the user to increase consumption frequency or quantity in order to achieve the desired results. Thus leading to a formed dependence to this substance, which can be physical, psychological, or both. Dependence begins to occur when the physiologic or psychological effects of alcohol consumption have been maintained for a prolonged period of time. The body will be continually looking for the alcohol to fill its perceived need for pleasure. When the body doesn’t receive enough alcohol, it will begin to exhibit withdrawal like symptoms. Withdrawing from alcohol can cause intense discomfort, and users will try to avoid these feelings at all costs.
Signs and Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
An individual who has alcohol addiction may display one or more of following manifestations:
Problems with work, social relationships, and brushes with the law.
Alcohol Addiction Detoxification
Similar to treatment of every addiction, the management of alcohol addiction always starts with detoxification. Since the user’s body has become accustomed to the physical and psychological rewards of alcohol, detoxification from alcohol will bring about intense withdrawal symptoms including: irritability, headache, confusion, tremors, high blood pressure, increased heart rate, anxiety, sweating, insomnia, and night terrors. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms require careful monitoring by highly-trained alcohol addiction treatment personnel. In some cases where the withdrawal symptoms are deemed severe, medically assisted detoxification is needed. This is extremely necessary in situations where alcohol withdrawal-induced seizures, hallucinations, and delirium tremens exist.
Nutritional support is vitally important during the detox process because alcohol is known to suppress appetite and negate the body’s ability to absorb nutrients. It is quite common that chronic alcohol abusers exhibit severe nutritional deficiencies. Vitamin-B is one of the most commonly deficient nutrients, and is one of the most vital to a safe detoxification. Vitamin-B, along with minerals, increase the hydration rate and aid in the removal of alcohol from the body. For treatments of less severe instances of alcohol abuse, vitamins and nutrients are usually administered orally. In severe cases of withdrawal where standard methods will not prove to be effective, nutrients will be administered intravenously, in order to maintain the safety of the patient, and to help facilitate the detoxification process.
Alcohol Addiction Treatment
Once safe to proceed, our alcohol treatment center will craft a recovery plan, focusing on the needs of the individual, and utilizing the best practices in in cognitive behavioral therapies, which incorporate counseling and group therapy workshops. Communication is very important as the individual is assisted in tracing the roots of their alcohol addiction. Open communication and understanding will help when guiding an individual to recognize the irrational logic of their thoughts that has led them to develop the addiction. Another vitally important component of rehabilitation are the group therapy sessions, they help develop a healthier set of behaviors when it comes to the management of alcohol addiction. Individuals are offered the opportunity to identify their behaviors to learn from them, and are also able to learn from the mistakes of others. The lessons learning in group therapy, and the support network created are an invaluable asset, and are crucial to living a life of sobriety.