Alcohol addiction usually develops slowly. It has often become well established in a person long before they are aware of it. By the time most alcoholics decide it is time to do something about their drinking it is often too late for them to quit on their own. But fearing that you may be addicted to alcohol does not necessarily mean that you are.
Identifying the Symptoms of Alcohol Addiction
If you are concerned about your use, or abuse, of alcohol and wonder if you have developed an addiction ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you feel anxious or unsettled if you don’t have at least a drink or two each day?
- Do you always associate alcohol with good times and celebrating?
- Once you start drinking do you usually end up drinking more than you had planned?
- If you are a man, do you consume more than ten drinks per week?
- If you are a woman do you consume more than five drinks per week?
- Do you think about alcohol regularly?
- Have you decided in the past to stop drinking but changed your mind?
- Have you changed your schedule or who you spend time with based on alcohol?
- Have you lost interest in activities that were once very important to you?
- Do you feel defensive when approached about your drinking?
- Have you ever lied about your drinking?
- Does your personality change significantly, for better or worse, when you drink?
- Have you done things you regret while you were drunk?
- Do you frequently drink to the point of intoxication?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions you may have an alcohol addiction. Please call our toll-free helpline any time of day or night to talk through this situation with one of our alcoholism counselors.
Alcohol Addiction Recovery
Alcoholism is both a physical and psychological disease and recovery requires the careful and comprehensive treatment of both of these aspects. The most successful programs develop customized treatment plans based on each individual’s needs. These treatment plans often involve some combination of the following tools:
- Medically supervised detox
- Diagnosis and treatment of any co-occurring psychological disorders
- Personal counseling
- Support group meetings
- 12-step programs
- Spiritual support
- Education about the causes and treatment of alcoholism
- Development of new coping and avoidance skills
- Emotional and strategic preparation for life after rehab
Depending on the severity of your addiction these programs can happen in either inpatient or outpatient formats. Most patients find that inpatient treatment gives them the best start on their journey to freedom from alcoholism. The full-time accountability and the opportunity to focus all energy and attention on recovery is a major advantage over those who stay in their normal environment and have to work or continue in school. But for some addicts outpatient treatment is adequate. Only an addiction recovery professional can help you determine the treatment that is best for your specific needs.
Help Is Available Right Now
Our helpline is open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Our counselors are always standing by and are ready to answer your questions and to help you determine what to do about your alcohol problem. The call is free, the advice is confidential and there are no strings attached. If you’re even slightly concerned about your relationship to alcohol please call. You have nothing to lose and your health, relationships and future to gain.