Depending on the scope of the program, alcohol rehab refers to the medical, psychotherapeutic, educational, and/or social treatment processes required for alcoholism recovery.
It is worth emphasizing that the ultimate goal of alcohol rehab is to help the alcoholic stop his or her addiction so that he or she can avoid the physical, psychological, social, legal, and financial consequences that are typically caused by alcohol dependency.
According to the recent research literature, however, this is apparently easier said than done. The bottom line, however, is this. If alcoholics are to attain sobriety and start on the road to alcohol recovery, they need to acknowledge that they have a drinking problem, they must have a sincere desire to stop drinking, and they need to find one or more alcohol rehab programs that works for them. Once they find such a program, they will eventually discover that they have made a significant change in mindset from” alcohol and dependency” to “alcohol and rehab.” Possessing this kind of mindset will go a long way towards helping them reclaiming their lives as they involve themselves in the alcohol recovery process.
The Effects of Alcohol on the Brain and Tolerance
With regular consumption of alcohol, the brain gradually adapts to the alcohol so that normal functioning is possible.
This not only explains how physical tolerance develops but it also explains why increasingly more alcohol is needed to get the same “high” or “buzz” with regular use.
When an alcoholic or a heavy drinker suddenly stops drinking alcohol, however, he or she typically suffers from alcohol withdrawal symptoms which may take days or weeks before the body returns to “normal.”
An important point to emphasize at this point is this: all “problem drinkers,” heavy drinkers, or alcoholics should seek professional assistance when they decide to quit drinking. That is, alcoholics need to change their mindset from a “alcohol and health hazards” to “alcohol and rehab” perspective.
The point: withdrawal symptoms are simply too serious to endure without quality alcohol rehab treatment.
The Alcohol Rehab Process
The alcohol rehab process has two focal points: physical dependency and psychological dependency. Treating physical alcohol dependency usually involves managing the alcohol withdrawal symptoms in a safe manner and alcohol detoxification, a process that is intended to rid the body of alcohol. Psychological alcohol dependency usually involves teaching the alcoholic new ways of interacting in an alcohol-free environment.
Types of Alcohol Rehab Programs
There are various alcohol rehab programs that provide alcohol treatment and rehabilitation. Some of these alcohol rehab programs are as follows: extended care centers, out-patient services, local support groups, residential treatment (in-patient) services, and sober houses. Within these programs are different sub-programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous, therapeutic community alcohol rehabs, medical model rehabs, and religious-based rehabs.
Alcohol Rehab Success
The Success of Alcohol Rehab Programs and Services from Alcohol rehab Scottsdale. Similar to other diseases, alcohol addiction can be overcome with proper alcohol rehab treatment, increased research efforts, and with prevention.
By providing more people with access to quality care, the costly drain on society and the emotional, financial, and physical burdens alcoholism places on families can be greatly reduced.
To point out some of the successes that are possible in various alcohol rehab programs, consider the following: research has shown irrefutably that successful prevention and alcohol rehab treatment results in significant reductions in hearth disease, HIV, child abuse, strokes, cancer, unwanted pregnancy, crime, and traffic fatalities.
Not only this, but professional alcohol rehab treatment and effective drug and alcohol rehab programs have been shown to improve job performance, health, and quality of life while at the same time reducing family dysfunction, drug use, and involvement with the criminal justice system.
In short, quality alcohol rehab programs go a log way in replacing the existing “alcohol and disease” mentality with an “alcohol and rehab” perspective.
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More than 1,700 college students in the U.S. are killed each year. This is about 4.65 deaths per a day as a result of alcohol-related injuries.
Alcohol Rehab Approaches
There are several traditional alcohol rehab approaches that are relatively well established. The following is a description of these different alcohol rehab programs that focus on changing the perspective of the” problem drinker” from “alcohol and destruction” to “alcohol and rehab.”
Physical addiction takes place when a person’s body becomes dependent on a particular substance such as drug or alcohol. It also means that a person develops a tolerance to that particular substance, meaning that the user requires a larger dose than before to get the same “buzz” or “high.”
Detoxification. Alcohol detoxification is the process of letting the body rid itself of alcohol while managing the withdrawal symptoms in a harmless atmosphere. Alcohol detox treatment is usually done under the supervision of a medical practitioner and is frequently the first step employed in an alcohol rehab treatment program. Due to the relatively long time-frame required for alcohol detox, these programs are usually part of an inpatient, residential alcohol rehab program.
In one survey that focused on college drinking behavior during a one-month period of time, 27.4% of American college students across the nation had driven a motor vehicle after drinking alcohol during this 30-day time period.
Behavioral Rehab such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Motivation Enhancement Therapy, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. A study administered by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism found that each of these behavioral alcohol rehab programs significantly reduced drinking in patients the year after treatment. Even though all of these alcoholism programs were considered “successful,” none of them could be singled out as “the best” alcohol rehab program.
In the United States during 2018, 16,694 deaths occurred as a result of alcohol-related motor-vehicle accidents. This amount was roughly 39% of all traffic fatalities. This amounts to one alcohol-related death every 31 minutes.
Therapeutic Medications. This treatment approach centers on the client taking doctor-prescribed medications such as the benzodiazepines for treating alcohol withdrawal symptoms and naltrexone (ReViaT) or disulfiram (Antabuse) to help prevent the person from returning to drinking after he or she has consumed alcohol.
Lost productivity from alcohol-related absenteeism, illness and premature exiting of the workplace, due to death and forced retirement, amounts to more than $70 billion each year.
For instance, antabuse is a drug given to alcoholics that elicits negative effects such as dizziness, flushing, vomiting, and/or nausea if alcohol is ingested. Antabuse has been proven to help prevent relapses and is effective mainly because it is such a strong deterrent.
Naltrexone (ReViaT), on the other hand, targets the brain’s reward circuits and is effective because it reduces the craving the client has for alcohol. Both medications, it must be pointed out, have armed alcoholism practitioners with additional ways to successfully treat alcohol dependency and alcohol relapse.
Outpatient Alcohol Treatment and Counseling. There are various approaches to counseling that teach alcoholics how to become aware of the situational and psychological “hot buttons” that trigger their drinking behavior.
Armed with this information, alcoholics can learn about different ways in which they can cope with circumstances that do not include the use of alcohol. It can be noted that these types of alcohol rehab programs, unlike detox rehab approaches, are typically offered on an outpatient basis.
Residential Alcohol Treatment Programs and Inpatient Alcohol Rehabilitation. If a person needs alcohol poisoning treatment, there’s a need for alcohol AND drug abuse rehab, if outpatient and support-oriented programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous are ineffective, and if the person’s withdrawal symptoms are severe, the person usually has to enroll into a hospital or an alcohol rehab facility and receive inpatient alcohol rehab treatment.
Such alcohol and rehab programs are geared for relatively long term alcohol rehab and typically include doctor-prescribed drugs to help the person get through detox and the alcohol withdrawal process in a safe manner.
The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous
One of the essential components of the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) rehabilitation program is articulated in the Twelve Steps. Based on the experiences of Alcoholics Anonymous’ earliest members, the 12 Steps represent the documented practices and principles, acquired through trail and error, the early members established in order to maintain sobriety and recover from alcoholism.
The following represents the 12 Steps in the Alcoholics Anonymous alcohol rehabilitation program:
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
- Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
With all of the damaging consequences caused by alcohol addiction, it makes sense for people to learn how to abstain from drinking, to involve themselves in the alcohol rehab process, and to restore their lives. Whether a person requires outpatient alcohol counseling, inpatient alcohol detox, or alcohol abuse rehabilitation, the goal of alcohol abstinence is worth pursuing especially when the damaging and devastating effects of alcohol addiction are taken into consideration. In a word, long-term abstinence and sobriety involve a change in the alcoholic’s mindset from “alcohol and addiction” to “alcohol and rehab.”
What matters most is the following: alcoholics need to acknowledge that they have an alcoholism problem, they must want to quit drinking, and they need to find one or more alcohol rehab programs that works for them so that they can restore their lives and start the alcohol recovery process.