Let’s get one thing straight: if you’re thinking about rehab or your loved ones have suggested it, then yes – your addiction is bad enough to warrant treatment.
What treatment mean differs from person to person. Some people find the 12-step programs helpful and enough to help them fight their demons, while others need the inclusivity of a rehab center.
Others still need an inclusive alcohol rehabilitation center and the 12-step program (or the like) to keep them accountable.
How do you know which option is right for you? First – identify if your addiction matches the points below.
If it does, then your next step is talking to a professional about your options, then trial and error to find the best plan for you.
What is Healthy Alcohol Usage?
Your view of alcohol, if you’re reading this page, is likely not a healthy one. Whether you were introduced to alcohol too young, witnessed your parent’s addictive ties to it, or came to use it for self-medicative purposes, it’s time to check-in.
Healthy alcohol usage is casual, not based in emotionality, and can be stopped at any time. People who have a healthy relationship with alcohol don’t think about drinking more than 2-3% of their day unless they’re currently having a drink.
They know how to respect their boundaries (one to two glasses per day is the recommendation) and can easily stop once they’ve started.
They don’t plan or attend events for the sole purpose of drinking alcohol, even if that is a theme or activity at the event. For example, they go to after-work drinks on Thursdays to hang out with their coworkers first and to have a drink, second.
If all this sounds impossible to you – that’s okay. Our culture has made it hard for people to have this healthy relationship, and those that genuinely do not abuse alcohol in any way are few and far between.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t be one of them – you have to commit to relearning your relationship with alcohol. That may mean moderation or a lifelong commitment to sobriety.
You’ll find out which is right for you along the way.
The Risks of Alcohol Abuse
Abuse of alcohol can result in several problems that can be harmful to your professional and personal lives. Long-term alcohol use has extra impacts that could put your life in danger as well as an increased risk of developing major health issues. One of the many reasons why alcoholics avoid getting help is that they don’t admit they have a problem. Some will make several justifications to justify their drinking habits.
When someone keeps bringing up your tendency for binge drinking, you become defensive rather than accepting responsibility for the issues that came from your alcohol use. You can’t live a sober, healthy, and drug-free life if you refuse to acknowledge the negative effects of alcohol.
Signs You Need Rehab
We noted a lot of the signs you may need alcoholic rehab in the “healthy usage” section above, but let’s make them clearer.
1. You’re Hiding Your Substance Usage from Friends and Family
If you find yourself lying to your loved ones about your drinking-related activities, whether that’s how much you drink, or where you are when you go to drink, that’s a warning sign.
People who hide their drinking feel either ashamed or guilty, which shows they know they’re drinking outside of healthy limits.
2. You’ve Tried to Quit, But You Can’t
If you’re reading this article right now, this is probably something you can identify with. Many alcoholics try or have the intention to quit on their own, but it never lasts.
Not being able to fight cravings and turning back to the bottle isn’t always a lack of willpower. Your body creates a physical dependency on alcohol, which you’ll need help to get through.
In fact, going through detox on your own, without telling anyone, could be fatal. You’ll want to find rehabs that take medicare, or whatever insurance you have, with medically assisted programs.
It’s the best way to fight the biological roadblocks to quitting.
3. You Think About Alcohol All the Time
People have over 50,000 thoughts a day. Imagine those thoughts broken down into a pie chart. What percentage of your thoughts pertain to alcohol, drinking alcohol, or planning to drink?
If it’s anything above 5%, that’s problematic. That means more than 2,500 of your thoughts are about alcohol every day.
And that example is the low end. Many alcoholics spend 25% of their daily thoughts on alcohol – or more!
If you’d like to get your brain back, so you can concentrate on things that are truly important, like work, family, hobbies, (anything that’s not alcohol), then rehab is a smart choice for you.
4. You’ve Lost Your Job or Are at Risk of Losing Your Job
Your alcoholic intake should never impact your work performance. Even people who hate their jobs don’t drink during the day or drink regularly enough to be significantly hungover at work.
Even if you’re drinking at work or showing up hungover, the part of your brain that’s thinking about alcohol can impact your performance. Work-related thoughts get pushed out to make room for thoughts about booze.
If you’re worried about taking time off to go to rehab – talk to your HR person. While employment laws differ, “I fired this person because they went to rehab to deal with an addiction”, won’t hold up well for your employer in court.
5. Family Members Have Expressed Concern
Your family loves you and wants you to be happy. If they’ve approached you about your drinking habits, it’s not because they want to stir up drama or annoy you – they’re truly worried.
It’s likely that they took time out of their lives to look up how to approach you about your alcohol usage, so they knew the right thing to say. And while these can seem like confrontations, they’re really signs that you have a recovery support system.
Show them (and yourself) that you want to make a change and find a rehab center like Sunrise Native Recovery that takes your insurance before those relationships go to waste.
More Signs to Tell If You Need Alcoholic Rehab
You Have Injured Yourself or Others by Drinking Alcohol
If you have caused injury to yourself or, worse, to another person while under the influence of alcohol, or if you have gotten into a fight in a bar, stumbled and broken your arm after a drinking spree, or been involved in a car accident while driving under the influence of alcohol, then you may want to consider getting sober.
All of these things point to the fact that you need assistance with your addiction. In addition, drinking alcohol can make the symptoms of depression as well as those of other mental conditions worse. It is extremely important that you seek help as soon as possible if you have ever considered ending your life or hurting yourself as a direct result of your drinking.
You Are Disregarding Your Responsibilities
It can be challenging for many addicts to attend and participate in significant gatherings with their families and friends because of their addiction. If this is the case, and you are missing important events such as weddings, the sporting events of your child, birthday parties, holidays, and other get-togethers with family and friends, you may want to consider getting help.
Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms Occur When You Attempt to Stop Drinking
You are likely experiencing withdrawal symptoms if you have tried to quit drinking or taking drugs but have started feeling symptoms such as headaches, nausea, cramping, paranoia, or irritability within a few hours of your last drink. These symptoms are what prevent many addicts from obtaining the help they need, but they are also an indication that therapy is necessary for the individual in question.
You Begin to Question Whether You Are Having a Problem with Alcohol
Most people, on some level, are aware when they have a problem with alcohol in their life. When it comes to your consumption of alcohol, if you find yourself asking if it is normal, the likelihood is that it is not normal at all. If you can step back and take an objective look at the way you live or the routines you keep and find that you are concerned about them, it may be time to seek professional assistance.
How to Treat Alcoholism
Conquering alcoholism is best accomplished in a facility that specializes in providing treatment, under the supervision of trained medical specialists. People who try to treat themselves on their own can end up doing more harm than good. For example, the withdrawal symptoms that one may experience during the detox phase can be highly unpleasant and are best managed through participation in a rehabilitation program.
You will have the best opportunity to maintain your sobriety over the long term if you take part in a recovery program that is facilitated by a rehabilitation professional. Your treatment professionals will walk you through each stage of the recovery process and assist you in developing sober objectives that are realistic and attainable.
Following completion of treatment, the professional who cared for you will connect you with alcohol abuse counselors and support groups. This will make it easier for you to stay sober and introduce you to other people your age who have also conquered their addiction to alcohol.
Facts About Alcohol Abuse
- The intoxicating ingredient in alcoholic beverages is ethyl alcohol. Ethyl alcohol, or ethanol, is made from fermented yeast, sugars, and starches derived from various grains, fruits, vegetables, and plants. When you limit your consumption, your liver can comfortably digest alcohol from any of these beverages because ethyl alcohol is fundamentally the same in all types of alcoholic beverages. Heavy drinking, on the other hand, overwhelms your liver, and excessive alcohol consumption circulates throughout your body, including your brain. This is what causes you to become drunk.
- Consuming alcohol in moderation may be beneficial to your health. There are a lot of substances that, in little amounts, are healthy for you but, in larger amounts, can be harmful. Consuming alcohol in moderation has been shown to have several health benefits, the majority of which are attributable to decreases in physiological reactions to stress.
- The history of alcoholism in one’s family is one factor in determining one’s likelihood of having an alcohol use disorder. This is due in part to the genetics that you inherit from your parents, and another portion is attributable to the environment your parents raised you.
- An estimated 88,000 people each year in the United States die from alcohol-related causes. It is the third greatest preventable cause of death in the United States because it is responsible for nearly one-third of all fatalities that occur while driving.
- Binge drinking, also known as drinking excessively within a short period, is widespread among people between the ages of 18 and 22.
If You Think It’s Time, It’s Time
Going to rehab can change your life. More than that, it can save it – not kidding. Only about 10% of the people who need rehab get treatment and there are about 88,000 alcoholism-related deaths every year.