Recovering from alcoholism is a huge challenge that many people need to face each day. Taking the steps to admit you have an alcohol use disorder and enter recovery requires a lot of courage. You may have heard about various people recovering from alcoholism, but what does recovery mean?
This article will discuss the recovery process, the health and social impact recovery can have, and why recovery is important. If you think you may have an alcohol use disorder, it’s never too late to get help. Call us at (888) 998-3319 to find out about the treatment options we offer.
Dangers of Alcohol
Alcohol is widely used around the world, but for some people, drinking it in moderation isn’t possible. If you find you are unable to control your drinking, then you may have an alcohol use disorder and need treatment focused on recovering from alcoholism.
Approximately 95,000 people die each year in the US from causes relating to alcohol. Although the danger to health is significant, this isn’t the only danger of alcohol. Alcoholism can cause an array of social problems for the individual with the disorder and their family. They may lose their job because of their addiction and find it difficult to meet their responsibilities. Over 10 percent of children in the US under the age of 17 live with a parent with an alcohol use disorder. Children with a parent with an alcohol use disorder are at a greater risk for depression and anxiety, parental abuse, and also neglect.
An alcohol use disorder is serious. Unless a person is committed to recovering from alcoholism, their relationship with alcohol will likely worsen. This can lead to a greater dependence on alcohol and serious health problems. These include liver inflammation and disease, heart problems, and a greater risk of developing some cancers.
Aside from the health problems someone with an alcohol use disorder may experience, the social impact of alcohol misuse is significant. Alcohol plays a role in around a third of all violent crimes. Also, in the US, there is one alcohol-related motor vehicle crash every 50 minutes.
The Importance of Recovering From Alcoholism
Looking at the shocking statistics above, it is easy to see why recovering from alcoholism is essential for anyone with an alcohol use disorder. Over time, an alcohol addiction will become worse and more difficult to manage. Although someone may feel that they have a level of control over their addiction, this is unlikely. Someone may have an alcohol use disorder if they:
- Are unable to meet their daily responsibilities, like work, school, or childcare.
- Find themselves withdrawing socially from situations unless alcohol is involved.
- Spend much of their time buying alcohol, drinking it, or recovering from a hangover.
- Feel cravings for alcohol and find it difficult to stop thinking about drinking.
- Begin to neglect their physical appearance and personal hygiene.
- Run into financial problems because of spending too much money on alcohol.
- Have tried to stop drinking or cut down their alcohol consumption in the past and failed.
These are just some of the signs that someone may be suffering from an alcohol use disorder. If you think these apply to you or someone you know, seek help from addiction professionals. Recovering from alcoholism can be very dangerous and shouldn’t be attempted without the supervision of professionals.
The Process of Recovering From Alcoholism
When questioning the importance of recovering from alcoholism, it’s a good idea to look at the recovery process. This can also be helpful if you are considering entering treatment specifically designed for recovering from alcoholism. Treatment programs are designed to tackle the complexities of addiction in a holistic way. When many people think of addiction, they often focus on the physical dependence a person has on a substance. However, this is just one small part, so it’s essential to seek professional treatment.
The first part of recovery is detoxification. This is where your body gets rid of all traces of alcohol. Detoxification usually revolves around abstinence. A person with an alcohol use disorder must stop consuming alcohol and allow their body to naturally detoxify. This can be an unpleasant part of recovery for some people because detoxification normally leads to withdrawal. When you have an alcohol addiction, your body and brain become dependent on alcohol to feel and function normally. When you take alcohol away, you can experience a range of withdrawal symptoms.
Withdrawal symptoms include:
- Vomiting and nausea
- Body tremors
These are just a few of the withdrawal symptoms associated with alcohol use disorder. Some people may experience more of these symptoms than others. The severity of withdrawal symptoms can also depend on how long a person has been addicted to alcohol and how much alcohol they would normally consume.
As withdrawal can be very uncomfortable and dangerous, detoxing under medical supervision is essential. Addiction professionals ensure that the detoxification process is as comfortable as possible for the person involved. They may also prescribe medication that can help alleviate some of the withdrawal symptoms.
Once a person has completed the detoxification process, they can then begin to focus on a different area of their addiction. The psychological side of addiction is extremely important. It is something that many people with an alcohol use disorder will have to battle for some time after physically recovering from alcoholism.
When someone develops an alcohol use disorder, they don’t only develop a physical dependency. Although recovering from physical dependency can be the most uncomfortable part, it is a relatively small part of a recovery journey. An addiction is built on learned behaviors and triggers. These lead to the consumption of the substance and become ingrained in the mind of the person involved. Breaking these habits can be very challenging, which is where therapy comes in.
Most people will attend some form of therapy throughout their recovery journey. This is because it’s very useful in preventing relapse. Therapies commonly offered to those recovering from alcoholism include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT).
Therapy allows the individual with an addiction to discuss their problems with an addiction professional. Once they identify the root of triggers, thoughts, and behaviors, they can establish ways to reframe these.
Group therapy is also a key part of recovery for many people. It allows the person to connect with others in the same position. Being around people who understand your addiction helps to create a sense of community support network. A support network made up of professionals and peers provides both personal and professional perspectives, leading to more comprehensive treatment programs.
The Importance of Support Networks
Support networks made up of professionals and peers can provide a sense of accountability. This is something that many people with alcohol use disorders need to keep them on the right path during recovery. Preventing relapse is the main goal of any program focusing on recovering from alcoholism, and a support network is a vital part of this.
Often, alcoholism can take away personal support networks from people. Addiction can greatly damage personal relationships. It can also lead to family breakdowns and a lack of sober friends. When this happens, it can be difficult for the person to gain the support they need to help them when recovering from alcoholism. Therefore, support groups through rehab centers and in the community can be a lifeline for some people.
Start Taking Back Control of Your Life Today
If you think you have an alcohol use disorder, then the best thing you can do is seek help. Remember, there are many people who have been successful in recovering from alcoholism. It is never too late, regardless of how severe your addiction is.
Email our addiction professionals today and learn about the treatment options we offer. Take back control of your life and break free from the constraints of alcohol.