Signs of Alcoholism
A troublesome, compulsion to drink despite all of the negativity that has occurred in your life as a result of the alcohol, signifies alcoholism. You get that feeling that you can’t quit even if you REALLY did want to. Signs of alcoholism include:
Increased tolerance to alcohol requiring you to drink excessively just to feel any effects.
Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal such as nausea, vomiting or shaking when you don’t drink.
Loss of control over the amount of alcohol you consume. You may tell yourself you are going to cut back, but despite your efforts to do so, you consistently seem to drink more, not less.
You focus on alcohol. You plan your schedule around having a drink. You plan activities around being able to drink. The world seems to revolve around your alcoholism.
Continued drinking despite problems with the law, family, friends, work or other areas of your life such as your health.
Although the characteristics of alcoholism are much the same, one alcoholic is not necessarily the same as the next. For instance, the National Institutes of Health defines the following types of alcoholics:
Young Adult Alcoholics – young adults with no prior family history of alcoholism or co-occurring mental illness.
Young Antisocial Alcoholics – young adults that have a family history of alcoholism and have a co-occurring mental illness or addiction to other substances.
Functional Alcoholics- middle aged adults that drink excessively while maintaining a stable job and supporting family. They have a family history of alcoholism and many suffer from depression.
Intermediate Familial Alcoholics – middle aged adults with a family history of alcoholism and depression.
Chronic Severe Alcoholics – middle aged adults with family history of alcoholism and mental illness, as well as addiction to other substances.
Causes of Alcohol Addiction
No one grows up saying, “I want to be an alcoholic when I grow up.” So what is it that causes alcohol addiction to sneak into the lives of some unsuspecting drinkers and not others? While the exact cause of alcohol addiction is not known and may vary from one person to the next, we believe that alcoholism begins with the first drink—so there is one surefire way to prevent it—don’t drink!
Alcohol addiction may be caused by:
Peer pressure. Those prompted by their peers to drink may not even initially enjoy drinking. Somehow, over time, they lose control over their ability to say no and they begin to drink more frequently and excessively.
Mental Illness. Those prompted to drink as a result of anxiety, stress, depression or some other mental illness may not realize they are suffering from an illness. All they realize is that the drinking “helps.” However, alcohol as a DIY cure for mental illness is most certain to lead to dire consequences.
Genetic factors. Although there is no specific “Alcoholism Gene” defined, researchers do believe that genetics play a key role in whether or not people who drink become addicted. People who have a family history of alcoholism are at greater risk for alcohol addiction than those with no prior history. It’s as if the body is primed to develop an addiction.
Environmental factors. Family situations, the way children are raised, may be inadvertently responsible for addiction later on. Drinking around children, or making alcohol consumption seem “normal” could lead to serious addiction struggles for that child later in life.
Recognizing the Need for Alcohol Addiction Treatment
Once you recognize the signs of alcohol addiction, you can begin to better understand the need for treatment. A key symptom of alcoholism that you should be on the lookout for is the inability to change drinking habits if you make a commitment to yourself or to others to do so. Alcoholics that do not change behaviors when they commit to doing so are at an increased risk for depression and anxiety because they may generally WANT to do better but believe that it’s just not possible for them to do so.
Intervention may be required if other treatment attempts have failed. Only you, or your family, will truly understand what you have been through and what it will take to get you to accept help. Spotting the need for treatment begins with:
Recognizing that alcohol has become a problem that you simply cannot control on your own.
Attempting to cut back or quit but failing to do so. You need help to stop!
Suffering from illness or injury as a result of your alcoholism and continuing to drink. You may require hospitalization in order to fully recover.
If you drink daily, regularly, or excessively, and you have tried other methods to quit or cut back without success, Costa Rica Treatment Center can help you get sober. Your first step to getting help is to recognize that you have a drinking problem that requires legitimate care. We’re here to help you every step of the way!
Types of Alcohol Rehab
Depending on the severity of the alcoholism, you may require time in a medical detox program followed by a period of time for recovery in either an inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment program. Below we outline the differences between each of the types of addiction treatment available to you:
Medical detox – alcohol addiction is characterized by serious symptoms of withdrawal that can make quitting seem impossible. Medical help can ensure you safely recover from any delirium tremens or other complications of withdrawal. The amount of time spent in medical detox for alcohol addiction varies but is generally 5-10 days.
Inpatient alcohol rehab – inpatient recovery programs provide around-the-clock care and interventional support when you need it the most. Most recovering alcoholics will spend at least 30 days in an inpatient rehab program in order to prepare for transition outside of treatment and back into a sober, healthy lifestyle.
Outpatient alcohol rehab – providing counseling, therapy and continued support to patients on an outpatient basis, these programs are idea for those who have already completed inpatient treatment or who may not be heavily addicted to alcohol. Outpatient programs are generally 90 days or more in length.
Getting Help for Alcohol Addiction
If you or someone you love is addicted to alcohol and needs help, we encourage you to call Costa Rica Treatment Center today at 1-800-708-3656. Alcohol addiction treatment programs like ours are tailor made for your recovery. Our inpatient alcohol rehab program begins with 30 days of care and extends upwards to 120-days or more depending on independent patient needs. We’ll help you get through the withdrawal symptoms, and prepare for long-term, lasting sobriety.
Aftercare and follow-up services
Alcohol addiction has likely stolen years from your life. But you don’t have to go on allowing the addiction to rule your daily routine. We have found that through inpatient alcohol addiction treatment, and a complete reintegration focus, patients are able to successfully overcome addiction even after many years of struggling to achieve sobriety. We look forward to treating you!