It is hard to come to terms with the presence of an alcohol problem. Most people who develop an addiction to alcohol will take a long time to admit they have a problem because, to them, alcohol is not a harmful substance. After all, it is not as bad as taking drugs, right?
Unfortunately, most people do not realise that alcohol is actually a toxic substance that, when abused, can be just as harmful as certain illegal drugs in terms of the damage it can do to mental and physical health, relationships, and general wellbeing. Those who do develop an addiction will require help to get their lives back under control, which usually means completing a programme of detox and rehabilitation.
How alcohol detox can help is by breaking the physical cycle of abuse. But what you should know however is that you will not overcome an addiction to alcohol with a detox alone. Many people mistakenly believe that quitting alcohol is enough to get their lives back on track, but the reality is that there is more to alcoholism than a physical addiction. There is also the psychological addiction to contend with, and this necessitates further treatment, usually in the form of talking and behavioural therapy.
How to Overcome an Alcohol Problem?
The first, and probably hardest, part of overcoming an alcohol problem is admitting the problem actually exists. This might sound simple, but to someone who has been relying on alcohol for a long time, accepting that it is the cause of all their problems can be tough.
Once you have accepted alcohol as a negative force in your life, you will need to consider an alcohol detox at a private detox clinic. How alcohol detox works is something that many people wonder about before actually going through the process. There are many misconceptions about this process and what it is like, which can all serve as an obstacle to recovery.
For example, many sufferers believe that it will be too painful or that they will be in danger and would rather continue with their addictive behaviour for fear that they will not be able to cope.
The reality is that an alcohol detox is something that you need to help you regain control of your life. If you have been struggling with an addiction to alcohol, you will need to take action and the first part of the recovery process is an alcohol detox. So, what is it like?
What Is Alcohol Detox Like?
It is important to know how alcohol detox can help you to get your life back on track. However, for those who are contemplating recovery, it is essential that they know what to expect from a detox. If not, they could be scaring themselves into never getting the help they need to get better.
It is true that an alcohol detox can be unpleasant at times. It is also true that it does not have to be the painful experience that most believe it to be. These days, detoxing from alcohol is a process that can be effectively managed in a dedicated facility with medication and attentive staff on hand.
Fully trained and experienced staff know how the process works. They know what to do to either prevent the worst symptoms from occurring or ease any discomfort that one may experience from symptoms that do occur.
When you stop drinking alcohol, detox begins automatically; it cannot be avoided. Nevertheless, how alcohol detox goes will depend on the severity of the addiction, your age, and whether you have any underlying medical health issues. It will also depend on where you are detoxing and who is with you during the process.
The earliest symptoms tend to appear around six to twelve hours after the last alcoholic drink is consumed and usually start off quite mild in nature. They might include mood swings, a racing heart, raised temperature, sweating, and shaking. You might also feel nauseous or suffer from a loss of appetite that may include bouts of vomiting.
Symptoms can become more moderate in intensity as the days go by. You might be feeling very tired but unable to sleep, and you may struggle with cravings for alcohol. An experienced attendant will know how to help you through these uncomfortable days.
It is important to remember that there is a risk of severe symptoms with any alcohol detox, but in a supervised facility, the risk is lower. This is because medical professionals can often prescribe medication that will prevent these symptoms from occurring, or at the very least can lessen the impact of the symptoms you do have.
Alcohol detox usually lasts for between seven and ten days. You are likely to feel worse before you begin to feel better, but you should know that you can get through this. When you do, you will have taken a massive step on the long road to recovery. Nonetheless, you should also know that your journey does not end with the completion of a detox programme.
Why Is Rehab Necessary after Detox?
It is common for some individuals to feel on top of the world after completion of a detox. After all, they have managed to abstain from alcohol for a couple of weeks and may be convinced that they will never go back to those dark days again.
Unfortunately, overcoming an alcohol addiction is far more complicated than just staying alcohol-free for a couple of weeks. It is a complex illness that can never be cured. It can, however, be treated and managed, but learning how to do this effectively takes time and patience. It also requires a willingness to change.
You might be inclined to forego rehabilitation, but this is a huge mistake. Detox will only tackle the physical side of the illness and will do nothing to address any underlying issues that may have led to your addictive behaviour.
Rehab will help you to learn how to live without alcohol. You will work closely with counsellors and therapists to get to the heart of your problem. When you do this, you can learn new strategies to help you deal with events in your life that might have previously resulted in you reaching for the bottle.
Failure to follow a detox programme with rehab means that the issues that caused your addiction in the first place will still exist and could cause you to spiral down the path of self-destruction again at any given time. So, while a detox can certainly help you to get control of your life once more, it is not sufficient in and of itself.
Accessing Help for Addiction
An alcohol addiction can destroy the lives of those affected; of this, there is no doubt. Moreover, while it can have a devastating impact on your life, it can also negatively affect the lives of many other people. For example, it has been estimated that for every person who develops an addiction, a further five will be negatively affected in some way.
You are probably already aware of the impact that your addiction is having on those you love; family members will suffer greatly when they have to watch a loved one struggling with addiction, particularly when they believe there is nothing they can do to help.
The good news is that with a programme of detoxification, followed by rehab, you can overcome your alcohol addiction. You can regain control of your life and put things back on an even keel. If you would like to know more about how alcohol detox could get you started on the road to recovery, please call us here at Banbury Lodge today.
We can answer your queries and provide information on the treatment options that are available to you. If you are ready to get started on your journey to sobriety and are interested in one of our excellent programmes, we would love to hear from you. Call us right now for a no-obligation quote.