What is Alcoholism?
The term “alcoholism” is often used to describe alcohol use disorder, also known as AUD. AUD is a medical condition characterized by an impaired ability to stop or control unhealthy alcohol use despite adverse consequences. Brain changes resulting from long-term alcohol use or misuse perpetuate AUDs. However, there are many effective evidence-based treatment approaches to help a person recover from alcohol and other substance abuse disorders.
Signs and Symptoms of Alcohol Use Disorder
- Drinking more frequently or in higher amounts than intended.
- Being unable to stop drinking despite attempts.
- Spending significant amounts of time getting, drinking, and recovering from the effects of alcohol addiction.
- Experiencing strong urges to drink (also known as cravings).
- Failing to fulfill obligations at work, home, or school due to recurrent alcohol use.
- Continuing to drink even after experiencing social or relationship problems that are caused or worsened by alcohol use.
- Giving up or reducing the amount of time spent at work or school or on social and recreational activities that a person once enjoyed due to alcohol use.
- Repeated episodes of drinking during times when it is physically dangerous to do so (such as while driving or operating machinery).
- Continuing to drink despite recurring physical or psychological problems related to alcohol use.
- Experiencing tolerance, which is when someone must drink increasing amounts of alcohol to achieve previous desired effects.
- Experiencing withdrawal symptoms when trying to stop or cut back on drinking, such as shakiness, restlessness, nausea, sweating, racing heart, seizures, or hallucinations (seeing or sensing things that aren’t there).
What are the Causes of Alcohol Addiction?
Some of a person’s risk of developing alcohol dependence depends on a few variables. These variables can include, How much, how often, and how quickly they consume alcoholic beverages. It is also believed that there are some biological, psychological, and social influences are also believed to play a role in the development of alcoholism. Some risks factors that may lead to someone developing alcoholism may include:
- A family history of alcohol addiction.
- Parental drinking patterns.
- Exposure to trauma and stress during childhood.
- Drinking at an early age.
Certain psychiatric disorders, including major depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders, and anti-social personality disorder are commonly associated with alcoholism, although whether or not these co-occurring disorders are a result of the alcoholism or contributed to the development of an alcohol use disorder is unclear and may be different per person. Some studies suggest that schizophrenia, depression, and personality disorders are also predisposing factors for alcoholism. If a person has one or more of these psychiatric disorders, they may have an increased risk of developing alcohol addiction.
Residential or Inpatient Rehab Services
residential treatment center means patients will be living and residing in the rehabilitation center for 30 to 45 days.
Inpatient and residential rehab stays are helpful to the patient because they remove the person from harmful environments and distractions. This takes them away from potential triggers that could lead to relapse. Residential treatment offers a healthy environment where the patient can focus solely on recovery and building the necessary coping skills to live life as a sober person. Patients are monitored round-the-clock by staff which includes nurses, therapists, and aides.
Intensive outpatient programs (IOP)
a level of outpatient treatment where patients live at home, but attend treatment 3 hours per day, initially for 5 days per week, then with decreasing intensity. This allows a continuous cycle of care where the patient can receive treatment while continuing with their life as normal.