There are several factors including whether you're trying to drink less or stop completely that will determine the best course of treatment if you have an alcohol abuse problem.
Brief intervention is a little supporting session that can be proposed to you if you are concerned about your drinking or have experienced an accident or injury that can be blamed on alcohol.
The duration of the intervention will only be about five or 10 minutes and, which cover a range of topics associated with your pattern of drinking, advice about reducing the quantity of alcohol you drink, alcohol support networks available to you and any emotional issues, which could be leading to the drinking.
Having a "drinking diary" might be suggested so you can write down and have an evidence of the amount of alcohol you consume per week. You may also receive advice and some tips about social drinking, which would include alternating soft drinks with alcoholic beverages when you are out with your friends.
You will profit from a better health if you eliminate alcohol. But it will be more feasible to reduce the volume of alcohol you drink or to start with that method before giving it up completely.
You could receive recommendations about total abstinence if you have previously proven unsuccessful with moderation.
If you have chosen moderation, you will be asked to attend counselling sessions in order to assess your progress and provide for the treatment and advice if required.
Furthermore, you might pass through daily blood tests in order to assure the health of your liver.
You should definitely get the opinion of an expert regarding management of withdrawal symptoms in case you have alcohol dependency.
To help them abstain, some people may need medication. In addition, you might opt to visit self-help groups, get prolonged counselling or experience a talking therapy like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).
The matter about how and where you should attempt a detoxification will be determined by the level of alcohol dependency you are suffering from. Withdrawal symptoms are seldom severe where the dependence is low and thus the detoxification can be done at home with no need for medication.
If your consumption levels of alcohol are high and in excess of 20 units a day, or you have earlier experience withdrawal symptoms you may still be able to detox from home with medications, which are prescribed to ease the withdrawal symptoms. Chlordiazepoxide is a sedative typically used for this reason.
You may have to go to a detoxification clinic or a hospital if your alcohol dependency has reached severe levels. The reason behind this is that you will require a specialised therapy as removal symptoms will be severe.
Your withdrawal side effects will be at their worst for the initial 48 hours. Once your body starts to get used to not having alcohol, these symptoms should slowly ease. This procedure normally lasts for around 3 to 7 days from the time you had your last drink.
You will also find disturbances within your sleeping pattern. You may have trouble falling asleep or you may keep waking up during the night. Your sleep patterns should be back to norma in a period of a month.
Over detoxification process, you must assure you consume a lot of liquids, about three litres per day. On the other hand, prevent consuming high quantities of caffeinated drinks, such as tea and coffee, since they may make your sleep issues worse and provoke nervousness. Water, squash, or fruit juices are recommended.
Even if you don't feel hungry, try as much as possible to eat regularly. Overtime, your appetite will improve.
Prevent driving or performing heavy equipment in case you are taking medicines to assist comforting your withdrawal side effects. It is quite possible for the medication to make you feel drowsy. Medications must only be taken as directed by the healthcare professional.
Detox can be a harsh time. Reading, music, walking, or bathing are means to get rid of stress. Find out as much as you can about how you can manage your stress.
Constant interaction with a medical expert or nurse is recommended for those undergoing home detoxification. This may mean going to your doctor, an NHS specialist or being visited at home by a treatment expert. You will also be provided with the relevant contact details for other support services if you find a requirement for additional support.
One essential place to start your journey to quit alcohol consumption is through withdrawal. Nonetheless, removal isn't a proper therapy by itself. You will find it necessary to receive further treatment and support, which will be needed to assist you during the long-term.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) suggests an amount of medicines to care for alcohol abuse.
A more elaborate explanation about these drugs is given below.
Acamprosate [brand-name Campral] is commonly used to help prevent a relapse, especially in people who have successively managed to abstain from alcohol. It is frequently used mixed with counselling to decrese the strong desires for alcohol.
Acamprosate will work by affecting the levels of a chemical within the brain which is identified as gamma-amino-butyric acid [GABA]. The belief is that the urge to drink alcohol is increased GABA.
The duration for the use of acamprosate is normally between the times that withdrawal starts till the sixth month, for those the drug is recommended for.
Disulfiram [brand-name Antabuse] can be used if you are trying to abstain but are concerned about having a relapse, or if you have had relapses earlier. You will have unkind physical symptoms if you consume alcohol and that's how Disulfiram works.
Apart from alcoholic drinks, you are advised also to avoid all sources of alcohol because the unpleasant reactions can be induced.
You should also be looking forward to avoiding any substances, which can give off alcoholic fumes like paint thinners and solvents.
You are advised to continue avoiding any form of alcohol for at least one week after using disulfiram, because the reactions that will come from these will still be unfavourable.
For the first two months of taking disulfiram, you'll get a visit every two weeks from medical experts and in the four months that follow, the visits will be down to one each month.
Naltrexone may be used to avoid a relapse or restrict the number of alcohol someone consumes.
Naltrexone functions by blocking opioid receptors within the body thereby stopping the effects of alcohol. It is frequently used mixed with other medication or counselling.
You must also be informed that some pain pills like codeine and morphne that contain opioids will be rendered impotent by naltrexone if it is among your prescription.
You must jettison the drug and contact your care team or GP for counselling if you feel sick while under naltrexone.
Naltrexone intake can go up to six months and sometimes more.
Previously being prescribed any of these medicines, you will have a complete medical evaluation, such as blood tests.
Nalmefene (brand name Selincro) can be used in order to avoid a relapse or limit the quantity of alcohol an individual consumes.
The drug reduces the urge to drink by blocking the brain's opioid receptors.
If you are getting help to decrease your alcohol consumption and keep going to therapy are the only cases when you can take nalmefene.
A lot of individuals that experience alcohol dependency issues find it helpful to visit self-help groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).
Alcoholics Anonymous believes that abstinence is the only answer and treats alcohol like a lifelong disease that has to be managed.
The plan in the treatment which is promoted by Alcoholics Anonymous is based on a 12-step program which can help you to overcome your addiction.
Accepting that you have lost control of your alcohol use and cannot manage your life again, confessing to your wrong deeds where necessary and making up with those you wronged are some of the steps used in AA.
Get more information about the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and alcohol assistance.
Twelve-step facilitation therapy works according to AA scheme. Instead of being in a group, you go through the steps on a face to face scheme with an expert.
The therapy can be your favourite treatment choice in case you feel uncomfortable to talk over your issues in a group.
This therapy attempts to treat alcohol addiction by trying to solve the problems that led to the addiction.
Your CBT therapist will guide you how to prevent some triggers and deal efficiently with those that are bound to happen.
The entire family and relatives, not just the addict would be affected by the addiction ailment.
Assistance is also accessible for family memebers as it should be a given right. Help can be very important if someone has to share his/her dwelling with an alcohol addict.
Aid and advice for family and friends of alcoholics can count on various specialized alcohol services.
You may need a drink diary in case you're trying to lower or moderate your alcohol intake.
With this, you will learn the volume you consume, the conditions that impact your drinking and how to lower the volume.