What is Alcoholism as an Illness ?

Many people use of the terms alcohol, alcoholic and alcoholism almost interchangeably, and there is often a lot of confusion as to what these terms actually mean, and how they relate to each other. In the context of a rehab/treatment center it is really important to understand at some level what these terms mean in order to make sure that the rehab is addressing relevant addiction terms accordingly.

Most people are aware of what alcohol is, and the different types of alcohol. For many people alcohol is not a problem at all in their lives. Many people do not drink at all, either for religious reasons or social ones.

Other people drink moderately and have a sense of control or normality over their drinking.

Alcohol

These types of people are often referred to in the context of alcoholism as social drinkers. Social drinkers represent a large proportion of society who are able to safely consume different types of alcohol as and when they choose, with no significant impact on themselves or others.

For other people, alcohol can represent a serious problem in their lives. This can manifest itself often at an early age when people are in their teens, through to people in later life.

People’s patterns of drinking may differ significantly, but there is often a common thread in that other people start to be concerned about their drinking, and the actual impact of their drinking has a detrimental effect on their lives at some level.

It is worth making a distinction that not everyone who has a problem with alcohol is necessarily an alcoholic. That may well be people who have a problem with alcohol at different points in their lives who are able to stop on their own and see the damage that they are doing to themselves and others.

Alcoholic

Making a distinction between an alcoholic and a non-alcoholic heavy drinker is an important distinction, not least because important considerations follow from both these patterns of drinking.

Someone who is a heavy drinker will most likely have become at some level addicted to alcohol as a consequence of continuous use. In the same way that someone becomes addicted to cigarettes, someone who is a heavy drinker will start drinking moderately and over time become more and more dependent on it.

This heavy drinking may well affect their lives, both their work lives and their family lives in some fairly obvious way. It is likely that once realised, the heavy drinker will be able to stop, although they will often need help and support from family, friends and possibly outside agencies.

Someone who is an alcoholic may outwardly displayed many of the same patterned behaviour and patterns of drinking as someone who is a heavy drinker. The real difference is likely to be an internal one, with the alcoholic having a significantly different mental and emotional attitude to alcohol and life.

There are many different patterns of alcoholics, and of alcoholism in general. It is probably safe to assume a few general pointers, although they should not be taken as a rigid definition.

Firstly, anyone of any age, status or background can become an alcoholic. There are no limits or prerequisites. Many people who are alcoholics grew up in alcoholic homes, and there is a widespread belief that there is some genetic component to people’s alcoholism.

Secondly, an alcoholic may well start off drinking at any age, and may start drinking as a social drinker as outlined above, and progress into active alcoholism at any point. Alternatively the alcoholic may start off drinking alcoholically, again at any age, and carry on drinking alcoholically for long as they are able to.

It is also safe to assume that someone who is an alcoholic reaches a point in their drinking when they are completely unable to stop on their own resources, and in most cases lose any will to try and stop as well. For a better understanding of the nature of alcoholism, it is suggested you read the book Alcoholics Anonymous, or attend open meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Alcoholism

In its simplest form, alcoholism refers to someone who is an alcoholic, in the same way that someone who is a diabetic is someone who has diabetes. This obviously is an oversimplification in one sense but does stress the point accordingly.

Whilst people have had drink problems for most of humanites time on earth, it is only relatively recently that alcoholism has been recognised as an illness, and as such people who drink alcoholically have been recognised as people who suffer from this illness, as opposed to people who have a moral weakness or lacking character.

In some ways this is a fairly spurious distinction, but is an important context for many people once they get sober. Alcoholism as an illness was recognised by certain members of the medical profession at the time that Alcoholics Anonymous was being formed, and the formation of this society gave significant growth to this belief, both within the medical profession and beyond.

Since then alcoholism is most often referred to as a disease, which has different implications to it being an illness, and has been generalised into a form of addiction in which alcohol and drug addiction and other forms of addiction are treated as the same issue.

This approach to treating alcoholism the same as other types of addiction has largely been formulated by rehabs and treatment centers, and is one that should be taken with much caution.

Alcoholism in its own right is probably best understood by people who are alcoholics themselves, and the relief in terms of understanding that it is a progressive illness gives many people a sense of context and reality that allows them to set in motion the process of recovery, and rebuild their lives both internally and externally.

Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms and Treatment

The issue of alcohol withdrawal, historically often referred to as dt’s, is a far more serious problem than the term dt’s often implies, and is an issue that needs to be understood and dealt with and managed safely when anyone is stopping drinking.

The issue of alcohol withdrawal will normally always refer to someone who is either an alcoholic, or someone who has a serious addiction to alcohol and is considered a heavy drinker, or a drinker who is at risk to themselves and possibly other people.

It is certainly possible that this person has also used drugs of some type, either prescription or non-description. This means that anyone who is an alcoholic who is looking to stop drinking needs to be aware that there are potential serious effects of stopping drinking suddenly, both from the drink itself and from the a combination of drink and any drugs they may have been using.

For many people who are considering stopping drinking in the context of being an alcoholic or a heavy drinker addicted to alcohol are likely to seek help in a rehab or a treatment center. This is a really important issue, and should be a major factor when considering which rehab treatment center to enter.

The issue is twofold. The rehab should have a fully qualified medical staff who are able to access whether or not the individual is at risk from alcohol withdrawal, and if they deem that individual to be at risk to manage the withdrawal in a safe and secure medical environment.

If the rehab itself does not have the staff and the facilities to do this, then it should have an arrangement with a local clinical facility such as a hospital who can oversee and perform such a withdrawal in a safe manner.

Alcohol Withdrawal

It is worth being aware that if a rehab does not have such facilities and staff on site and has to refer you to a local clinical facility, then the cost of that facility may well be an extra item for the individual to pay, and may well not be covered under their insurance.

Not everyone who stops drinking has problems in terms of alcohol withdrawal, it is very much an individual experience that needs to be assessed and monitored by qualified medical staff in a facility where they are able to do this.

Once this procedure has been assessed it is also really important that the rehab has qualified medical staff on site or on call 24/7 in the event that there are any problems that need to be addressed.

It is also worth mentioning that alcohol withdrawal is also often referred to as an alcohol detox, or a drug and alcohol detox or a medical detox. This is important, as many rehabs will offer what they refer to as an holistic detox, which is a completely different process to a medically supervised drug and/or alcohol detox.

A holistic detox is a name that excites many people because of the implications of it. What it really refers to is a cleansing process of the body and mind and spirit. This idea is appealing, and often people are drawn to this without any real understanding of what is actually involved.

An holistic detox can refer to anything from a number of therapy sessions, through to a mountain climbing course, through to colonic irrigation through to things such as a sweat lodge. Some of these processes are potentially quite dangerous, and great care should be taken before signing up to them.

Anyone who is considering giving up drinking on their own, i.e. not going through a rehab or a treatment center would be well advised to seek medical advice from a qualified medical practitioner before beginning the process.

Many people do safely stop drinking without any major side-effects, but the implications of suddenly giving up alcohol after many months or years of abuse of fairly obvious.

Many people decide to stop drinking by going to meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, which allows them to carry on with their normal day to day life, assuming they have one.

Even so they should be well aware of the potential effects of alcohol withdrawal, and would be well advised to seek medical advice prior to stopping drinking, and at any point during the first few days or weeks of being sober if they are at all concerned about any aspect of their health that they become aware of once they are sober.

How to Treat Addiction

Many people use the word addiction almost quite loosly in a way to refer to people’s liking or obsession for virtually any substance, activity or behaviour. In normal everyday life the term addiction is often used jokingly, saying that someone is addicted to x, y or z, and it’s not really that much of a problem.

When it comes to dealing with addiction in the context of alcoholism and addiction to various types of drugs and other behaviours such as gambling etc, then it is really important to understand the gravity of what these conditions and situations refer to, and what help is available and where.

Addiction is a widespread term, and in the context of rehabs and treatment centers first came into being in the context of alcoholism in the formation of Alcoholics Anonymous. Alcoholism is often treated in the same context as other types of addiction, but this is normally a mistake and should be treated with caution.

Whilst it is difficult to generalise about alcoholism, and there are many types of it, it is properly fair to say that an alcoholic will drink because they are an alcoholic, not the other way round.

In other words, an alcoholic will not become addicted to alcohol in the same way that someone will become addicted to cigarettes, through a pattern of using an addictive substance that leads to a form of addiction that they cannot break.

A rehab or treatment center will offer addiction treatment programs for alcoholism, alcohol addiction and other types of addiction as well, and should be fully licensed and accreditted

Most rehabs will treat all of these types of addiction as essentially the same problem, and will focus on the individual as being the real problem, with the solution being helping the individual to change.

A rehab is likely to stress that the individual is something referred to as an addictive personality, and that their addiction is or was essentially about a drug of choice, be that alcohol or something else.

The advantage of this type of approach is that it can help the individual to realise that their real problem is within themselves, and thus is changeable either with the help of a 12 step program or through some other means.

A basic underpinning of this approach is that addiction itself is a disease, leading to the idea of an addictive personality and a drug of choice.

Again this may be helpful or not depending on the approach taken by the rehab, and at what level the individual feels it helps them make sense of their lives.

The issue of addiction is quite a complex one, and one that has undergone and continues to undergo much medical and social research.

When considering entering a rehab, it is worth bearing in mind what weight the rehab treatment center places on current clinical research, and how up-to-date that addiction treatment programs are in the context of modern day research.

Addiction and Rehab

A rehab or treatment center also often offer treatment for other types of addiction.

These can range from what is referred to as dual diagnosis, which means people who are alcoholics, addicted to alcohol as well as being addicted to various types of drugs both prescription and non-prescription, through to food, gambling, sexual addiction and addiction to the internet and video games.

It is worth being slightly cautious with any rehab that offers too broad a range of addiction specialities and addiction treatment programs.

There is a belief that some rehabs use the term addiction or addictive personality much too broadly, and use it essentially as a catchall phrase that allows them to treat virtually anyone for virtually any problem that they can classify as an addiction.

Remember that the problem and solution in the context of a rehab or treatment center tends to be seen as that of an addictive personality with a drug of choice. This allows some rehabs to take an approach that has some questionable ethical and moral issues.

At the end of the day a rehab is a business, normally a very profitable business, and the more they can broaden their client base or their customer base the more profitable they will be, even rehabs that describe themselves as Christian rehabs

Addiction to alcohol, alcoholism and addiction to drugs and gambling and other types of serious problems are a major issue, and for many people a rehab or a treatment center is the first port of call that they will enter to seek help.

A rehab and especially the rehab staff is likely to help the individual understand some of the underlying emotional drives and issues that have fuelled thir addiction, and help give them a structure or program that will allow them to rebuild their life and offer them the chance to live a life that is essentially free from their addiction and their addictive behaviours.

What are Rehab facilities?

People who ask or talk about rehab facilities often do so with a understandable but misguided idea that rehab is are a mix between an upmarket hotel and a country club, a sort of retreat with varying degrees of comfort or opportunities.

The reality is that rehabs differ widely in terms of the facilities that they offer to people, and that approach as to how the environment and addiction treatment programs should be offered to any individual who enters an inpatient rehab.

Traditionally, a rehab would treat someone who was an alcoholic or had a problem with alcohol, and their time spent in a rehab would consist of a medical detox if needed, followed by a period of different types of therapeutic treatment, often a mix of 12-step program ideas and meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous.

There would be a need some type of clinical facility, along with a modicum of comfort and very basic facilities.

The rise of treatment centers and rehabs has meant the growth of this industry, and a white approach that can differ considerably.

The initiators of the treatment center industry tried to strike a balance between providing an environment where the alcoholic could feel safe and secure, along with facilities treated them as someone who was trying to get well, rather than as a  bad person.

Rehab facilities

At the same time, there was a belief that treatment centers and rehabs  needed to be a fairly structured environment, and should be designed to focus the individual fully on their recovery process.

Rehabs and treatment centers take a number of different approaches. Some believe that a rehab should be a fairly spartan place, with very basic facilities and an entirely structured timetable from morning till night.

Some rehabs believe in an incredibly tight grip on what the individual can bring into rehab, and what they can and cannot do whilst there.

This can seem incredibly regulated some people, inevitably attracting some and alienating others.

There has been a growth in recent years of what can be termed luxury rehabs, which take almost an extreme opposite view. They believe that a rehab should essentially be the most serious and pleasant environment that someone can spend their time in, and that this is conducive to aiding in their recovery.

Both these approaches are somewhat of the extreme, and inevitably there are a wide number of different approaches in between.

There is no right and wrong approach to recovery, and every individual should approach a rehab based on what they feel is most appropriate to them.

The rehab facilities that are available should be outlined on the rehabs website, and rehab should be open to discussing what these facilities are, and how they help a client in their 12 step recovery.

 

What is a dual diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis is a term that specifically refers to people who would consider themselves both alcoholics and drug addicts, or people who have had problems with both alcohol and drugs. The term arose mainly in rehabs and treatment centers, and it is important to understand this context.

Initially treatment centers and rehabs treated people who had a problem with alcohol, whether they were turned alcoholics or problem drinkers, or people who had alcohol abuse issues. As this industry grew, people entered rehab who not only had problems with alcohol but with other substances including many narcotic drugs, and various behaviours.

Treatment centers and rehabs quickly picked up on this, and in the specific case of people who have problems with both alcohol and drugs they refer to them as being dual diagnosed. In addition, the rehab industry widened their scope of potential clients or a client base by beginning to define people as an addictive personality.

This meant that  in effect, any individual who had any addiction to any substance or any type of addictive behaviour could be labelled as an addictive personality, and  their particular addiction,  whether substance or behaviour, could be labelled their drug of choice.

Dual diagnosis

There are many people who believe that the terminology employed in the idea of an addictive personality and a drug of choice is simply to enhance the pool of people who can be susceptible to needing to go into treatment.

There are other people who defend the term addictive personality as being  a reasonably good definition of some help an individual who has a number of differing emotional drives and issues which fuel that alcoholism or addiction.

Whatever someone’s take on the term dual diagnosis, in reality it simply means that it refers to someone who has a problem but with alcohol and drugs, or has had a problem with alcohol and drugs and is now clean and sober.

In terms of 12 step recovery, what it really means is that individual will have used both alcohol and drugs at different stages of the alcoholism and addiction, and probably recognises a need to keep clear of both in order to stay clean and sober.

 

Where to get Drug Counselling

Anyone seeking to get drug counselling, either for themselves or someone they know, can often face a bewildering array of information and choices that can be difficult to navigate and fathom.  Drug Counselling is often linked to alcohol counselling, and it can sometimes be difficult to establish who best meets a specific set of needs.

Anyone who has a drug problem and is aware of the need to help can approach a number of different sources initially. This can include meetings of Narcotics Anonymous, Alcoholics Anonymous or explore the possibility of going to an inpatient rehab.

There are also likely to be a number of outpatient type rehab facilities available, depending upon where the person lives.

If in addition, the individual is seeking specific drug counselling either as a way of helping them deal with the problem, or as an adjunct to some of the type of recovery and the choices become much wider.

There are a number of people who advertise themselves specifically as alcohol and drug counsellors, there will be a massive number of other counsellors and therapists who do not specifically describe themselves as such, but will have experience in the field of alcohol and drug abuse.

Drug counselling

It is worth the individual establishing initially what help and support they need.

There is a big difference between getting some initial support and advice about how best to deal with a drug problem, to a longer term need some type of therapy or counselling as a way of helping to deal with underlying emotional issues.

It is likely that anyone entering an inpatient rehab will be able to access some type of drug counselling, either on a one-to-one basis or as part of group therapy.

It is also likely that a number of therapists, both in rehab and in private practice themselves what they would refer to as recovering addicts, or recovered addicts.

Going to see a drug counsellor is themselves a recovered recovering addict is likely to either be very attractive to some people, or a big turnoff to other people. It is worth being aware of the issue and seeking clarification from the counsellor themselves what their own statuses regarding any type of previous drug or alcohol abuse

What is a crack addict?

The term crack addict normally refers to someone who is or has been addicted to crack cocaine, but is also used as a slightly disparaging term for anyone who might be deemed to be a type of drug addict who not only uses crack cocaine, but is a continual addict.

Anyone who is or has been a crack addict is likely to have been addicted to one or more drugs that will have had a serious impact on their health, mental, physical, spiritual, sexual etc.

If the individual recognises that our problem they may well seek help, either by entering an inpatient rehab,  seeking some type of therapy or counselling, going to meetings of Narcotics Anonymous or some similar 12-step organisation.

One of the important thing is to understand is the very stages that are involved in the recovery process, wherever it may take place.

First and foremost and most critically is a need for an assessment as to whether or not a medical detox is needed, and the subsequent overseeing of any medical detox that may be needed by experienced and competent clinical staff, in a safe and secure clinical environment.

Crack addict

This might well be done in an inpatient rehab, although there are other clinical facilities for any detox could be assessed and supervised.

Once any medical detox has been done if needed, the main work involved in helping someone stay off any type of addictive substance will largely be of a therapeutic nature. This is true whether it is done in rehab or  in a 12 step organisation, the term therapeutic being used in a very importance.

One of the key elements, perhaps the key element for anyone seeking any type of 12 step recovery is the issue around change.

There is often a perception and a much talked about process of the need to change, both externally and internally.

The need for change may be evident in certain areas of someone’s life, but it should also be remembered for many people change seen as a real threat, not as an opportunity. For anyone who has been an alcoholic or a drug addict, their drinking or using will in many ways have seemed to them a way of holding themselves together rather than as the cause or reason for their problems.

For this reason the issue of change needs to be approached often in a very gentle way, party been given to the creation and provision of a safe environment, in which the individual can develop a degree of safety and as such allow the process of change to begin and take place.

 

Is teen drug abuse dangerous ?

The question of ‘is teen drug abuse dangerous’ should be answered with a pretty emphatic yes, but also needs to be slightly more fully explored this as there can sometimes be a broader question involving alcohol or possibly some other type of substance abuse.

Anyone charged with looking after a teenager or adolescent is likely to be aware of the possibility that they may be susceptible to either being involved with taking drugs or alcohol, or they may hang around with people who are.

One should always be very wary of generalising about the things, but it is also a good idea to highlight one or two things that may be helpful.

Anyone who has response policy for looking after any teenager or adolescent, who suspects that team drug abuse maybe present in their lives, first and foremost has a responsibility to seek help.

This means helpful themselves in terms of how they deal with it, and help for the teenager or adolescent to deal with what is a drug problem.

Teen drug abuse

The stigma of drugs normally does not differentiate between a type of drug, and often includes alcohol.

There are some people who would argue that teenagers  and adolescents will experiment with drugs, alcohol and sex, and the majority of them will grow out of it and lead fairly normal healthy lives.

That is a view that to an extent may be true, but not a view that anyone with responsibility for looking after a child of any sort can actually indulge in.

It is worth having an understanding of the nature of drug abuse and alcohol abuse or alcoholism, and realising that whilst some people it may simply be a phase, for a lot it won’t be, and in fact will be an indication of a much more serious problem in terms of a susceptibility to alcoholism or drug abuse.

The reality is that if a teen drug abuse problem is taken seriously at the outset, and dealt with in a loving and compassionate way, then not only can the life of the teen be straightened out, but also potentially any long-term problems with drugs or alcohol can be addressed early on in their lives.

What are alcoholism symptoms?

People often ask what alcoholism symptoms, often at a way of trying to create a checklist of what constitutes an alcoholic, on the basis that a diagnosis will help confirm  the illness in someone and lead to a recovery.

This approach has been fuelled in many ways by the acceptance in medical circles that alcoholism is an illness, often referred to also as a disease, and inevitably this will lead people to think that because alcoholism is an illness, there are obvious symptoms or signs of it that can be identified and labelled.

The reality of active  alcoholism is much more difficult to define.

Anyone who lives with what has lived with or has been affected by someone else’s alcoholism will either be painfully aware of it, or completely in denial of it.

Often an individual or independent observer would be able to see that someone has a serious problem drink, either by their behaviour or that attempting to cover up their problems, or the inability to see their own truth about the problem.

Alcoholism symptoms

Is worth pondering the recovery process of  Alcoholics Anonymous to have a better understanding of how alcoholism can be understood and processed.

For someone who is an alcoholic themselves, Alcoholics Anonymous offers a wide range of literature details experience of Alcoholics Anonymous, and presents many stories and examples of people who identify as alcoholics.

The stories and people’s personal sharing is give the individual and opportunity, if they so choose, to identify and begin the process of realising that they themselves may be an alcoholic.

Someone who is closely affected by another person’s alcoholism, either family or friends, then there is a separate concept organisation known as Al-Anon which will help the individual break out of that and measurement with the alcoholic or the alcoholic family and begin the process of re-establishing their lives as a separate person.

Once this process has started, then it is more likely the individual will gain some type of objectivity about the individual drinking and their alcoholism.

It is also were saying that Alcoholics Anonymous, along with other organisations, produces a wide range of literature that tries to explain alcoholism that is specifically geared to people who are not themselves alcoholics, but may well come into contact with people you are and who seek help.

 

What is Chemical Dependency ?

Chemical dependency is a term that has come to be used with reference to almost any type of substance abuse or addiction to alcohol/drugs etc.

The original sense of addiction in the context of a 12-step recovery was an addiction to alcohol, normally referred to as alcoholism.

As an understanding that alcoholism was an illness grew in medical and therapeutic circles, treatment centers and rehabs began to treat people who they referred to as being dual diagnosed, that is that they had an addiction to some type of drug as well as a problem with alcohol.

Since then rehab’s and treatment centers have broadened their concept of addiction treatment programs to essentially deal with anyone who had any type of addiction, to any type of substance or behaviour.

This approach certainly has its critics, many will argue that seeing the individual as an addictive personality, and their chemical dependency or behaviour is simply a drug of choice is highly oversimplistic.

Chemical dependency

At the same time, most people who have had any dealings with anyone who is an alcoholic or addict, either active or in recovery, will happily testify that they have significant personality and identity problems that have undoubtedly fuelled that alcoholism or addiction.

The linkage between chemical dependency and addiction and rehabs is one that is important to seek an context.

It is very easy for someone unfamiliar with the world of  12-step recovery who is confronted with someone who has a terrible addiction to simply follow the dictates of a particular rehab or treatment center.

Sometimes time is of the essence, and it is often essential to get someone into a rehab or some type of detox program so that the health can be stabilised, at least in the short term.

The process of recovery from any type of addiction or alcoholism, in the context of 12 step recovery, can be done either in a rehab or by going to meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous or another 12 step organisation.

This process of 12 step recovery is by necessity a long-term process, and one undertaken by someone who had at some level either acknowledged their chemical dependency and are willing to try and deal with it, or are willing to acknowledge the life is a complete disaster and are willing to try and change it, even if they don’t know why.

 

 

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What is an inpatient drug rehab?

An inpatient drug rehab is normally simply referred to as a rehab  or a treatment center.

The vast majority of rehab is deal with the question of drug addiction of all sorts, as well as alcohol addiction or alcoholism, and a wide range of other compulsive or addictive behaviours.

An inpatient drug rehab will be a clinical facility which will admit and look after someone who is suffering from some type of addiction to one or more drugs and/or alcohol.

It is important that an inpatient drug rehab has two main areas of focus.

Firstly should be the facilities and medical staff to assess and if necessary oversee any medical detox that may be needed.Iinpatient drug rehab

Inpatient drug rehab

This is crucially important. Anyone who has been addicted to any type of drug may well have been using different types of drugs as well as alcohol, and the coming off of these drugs can present significant, often life threatening medical challenges.

Such an inpatient drug rehab needs to either have its own facilities and medical staff, or arrangements with another local clinical facility such as a hospital who can assess and oversee any medical detox that may be needed.

Once a medical detox has been assessed and overseen if necessary, then the time spent in an inpatient drug rehab is likely to focus much more on a number of therapeutic approaches, often 12 step based, which are geared towards helping the individual begin the process of understanding a number of emotional and mental issues that have fuelled the addiction to drugs and alcohol.

This therapeutic work that is done in an inpatient drug rehab will vary depending upon the nature and type of rehab or treatment center, and will by its very nature be fairly short-term.

The majority of rehabs and treatment centers recommend that inpatient clients to attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous’s, both during their stay in rehab and once they have left. This is to give them a sense of whether long-term recovery is most likely to be based, and how they can most effectively ensure their long-term sobriety

ALCOHOL WITHDRAWAL ADDICTION

Anyone entering a rehab for a problem with alcohol, commonly referred to as alcoholism or alcohol addiction would be well advised to be aware of the potential effects of alcohol withdrawal, sometimes referred to as a detox, historically referred to as the DT’s.

The effects of withdrawal from alcohol addiction or alcoholism can be severe in some people, and it is a good idea to make sure that anyone entering a rehab is clinically assessed,  by experienced clinical staff to  monitor the effects of withdrawal from alcohol.

One important aspect of alcoholism that is often not fully understood is that it is regarded commonly as what is termed a progressive illness.

There are sometimes a debate about whether alcoholism is a disease or an illness or a combination of nature or nurture, and people will have differing views on this question.

Too many  people who have got sober using Alcoholics Anonymous, they are very aware that her own alcoholism is a progressive illness, and for many it is the progressive element that is really important.

ALCOHOL WITHDRAWAL ADDICTION

The progression of alcoholism in many people is not simply a issue of tolerance for alcohol, it is a description of both how their drinking has progressed over a period of time, how that emotional state has changed during that time, and how alcohol has become at the end of the drinking the only thing of real value, the only thing that needs to be protected and kept safe.

One of the reasons this is so important, is in terms of understanding the nature of alcoholism, and in truth the only people who probably really do understand it either active alcoholics themselves, or people who have got sober and would consider themselves to be alcoholics in recovery.

The nature of alcoholism as an illness can be quite varied and widespread, the progression of it is an element that people who are alcoholics will at some level be able to identify with, either in terms of the  tolerance or lack of tolerance of their drinking, or a more general felt sense of their inner and outer world closing in on them, and alcohol remaining the only thing that is holding them together.

12 STEPS TREATMENT

The 12 steps treatment program of Alcoholics Anonymous has become widely regarded as a yardstick for recovery from alcoholism, whether it be practised within the organisation of Alcoholics Anonymous, or in a rehab or treatment center.

The phrase 12 steps has become widely used, and often misinterpreted in terms of what they really mean.

This is important, because many rehabs and treatment centres often promote themselves as being 12-step based, which can mean a variety of different things.

Equally there are a number of rehabs and treatment centers that specifically promote themselves as being non-12-step based, and this has implications in terms of what they do offer as addiction treatment programs, and to what extent they are clinically-based or proven.

The original 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous can be found in its entirety in the book of the same name, and is widely available anyone to buy, borrow from their local library, or read online for free.

It should always be remembered that the 12 step program of Alcoholics Anonymous should be taken in context of its writing.

This means that it was written along with a number of descriptive chapters as a record of experience, of what the early members of Alcoholics Anonymous found worked for them.

12 STEPS TREATMENT

People are a perfect liberty to use any or all of  the 12 step program in anyway that they find helpful or not.

A number of treatment centers and rehabs use a variation of the  12 step program, but do tend to promote it as if they were offering the benefits of the program as practised within Alcoholics Anonymous.

This can be slightly misleading, and can also be  seen as taking advantage of people who are quite  vulnerable and do not fully appreciate the difference between the two approaches.

In addition, a number of  rehabs and treatment centers will be very supportive of 12 step programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous and will actively encourage or insist there resident clients attend meetings of these organisations.

In this way a number of rehabs will align themselves with a 12 step recovery program.

 

ALCOHOLIC TREATMENT

The nature of alcoholic treatment can be detailed in certain ways, but should always be fully understood that there are a number of variables that determine whether any form of addiction treatment programs will actually work or not.

Probably the most proven method of treatment for an alcoholic is effected through the  organisation Alcoholics Anonymous,  and its 12-step program of recovery.

There has also grown a huge industry of treatment centres and rehabs which offer a wide range of varying treatment programs for an alcoholic, normally residential, and normally for a period of around 28/30 days.

One of the main issues concerning any type of treatment for an alcoholic relates to what is commonly referred to as the self delusion of the alcoholic themselves.

This normally refers to the nature of an alcoholic themselves, in terms of emotional and mental character, and  the nature of how they relate to alcohol itself.

There are a number of different interpretations of what being an alcoholic means, and how alcoholism itself manifests within different people.

They are also a number of common features of alcoholism and alcoholics, which allow people to relate to each other at a particular level, and can help in terms of enabling people who are alcoholics to get a measure of stability and stay sober.

An alcoholic treatment program, whether it be in a rehab or treatment center, will need to address a number of highly sensitive areas, one of which will be the relationship between the alcoholic and alcohol itself.

ALCOHOLIC TREATMENT

It is probably fair to say, that at some point in their drinking, an alcoholic will come to see alcohol as being the solution to their problems, rather than the problem itself. This may happen at the beginning of their drinking, or maybe an element of the progressive nature of their drinking, Becoming the only type of reality they are able to understand towards the end.

This sense that alcohol becomes the only thing that is holding them together is perhaps unique to alcoholics, and is one of the hardest things for anyone outside of that circle to either understand or be able to deal with.

What is important, is that there is a safe environment created that allows an alcoholic to begin the process of feeling safe enough to dismantle the various emotional coping mechanisms that they have erected in order to keep themselves safe. This can include a variety of emotional survival  skills as well as the main coping mechanism, alcohol itself.