Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Research indicates roughly 50% of all deaths in the United States can be attributed to alcohol or tobacco use. In fact, the “2015 National Survey on Drug Use and Health” showed more than 86% of U.S. adults age 18 and older have consumed alcohol at some point in their lifetime, and 70% have consumed an alcoholic beverage in the past year. Additionally, the survey indicated 15.1 million adults age 18 and older were dealing with alcohol use disorder (AUD).

Clearly, alcohol use is prevalent, yet finding the best way to treat alcoholism is complex. Alcohol is legal across the United States; it is readily available, and as such, people have ample opportunities to drink alcohol day after day. It is also difficult to avoid exposure to alcohol – from billboards to restaurants, alcohol appears everywhere. And if a person cannot control his or her cravings for alcoholic beverages, the results can sometimes be fatal.

Alcohol is a neurotoxin, and it affects both the body and the brain. Meanwhile, an alcohol addiction may lead to feelings of self-hate and hopelessness. The damage associated with prolonged and excessive alcohol consumption can be significant, too. If a person consumes high volumes of alcohol over an extended period of time, his or her body and mind will deteriorate. The end result of an alcohol addiction: long-lasting physical, mental, psychological damage.

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  What is Alcohol Addiction?

Alcoholism is a leading addiction in the United States. It occurs when a person constantly consumes alcohol or develops a physical dependence on it. In this scenario, an individual reaches a point where he or she believes it is impossible to function without alcohol [1].

Alcohol is found in a variety of beverages, including beer, wine, and hard liquor. The amount of alcohol in a beverage is listed on a product label; it is listed as alcohol content by volume (ABV) and varies based on the beverage.

Oftentimes, beer has an ABV between 2% and 12%; brand-name beers usually have a BAV between 4% and 6%, and a person may need to consume at least three servings before he or she feels intoxicated. Comparatively, the BAV of craft beers may extend up to 12%. With craft beers, an individual may require fewer servings before he or she feels intoxicated.

Wine addiction is problematic, too. A 5-oz. serving of wine, for example, has virtually the same amount of alcohol as a 12-oz. beer. Wine is often viewed as a “classy” alternative to beer as well. And in some instances, people drink excess amount of wine without realizing the potential risks associated with their actions.

Wine addiction is commonly associated with anxiety, depression, and other mental health conditions. If an individual wants to drown out negative feelings, for instance, he or she may consume excess amounts of wine, leading to a wine addiction.

Alcoholic beverages like tequila, gin, rum, and vodka can lead to addiction, too. These beverages have a higher ABV than beer or wine. Plus, they can be mixed with juices, water, and other drinks or consumed “neat,” i.e. directly from a glass or bottle.

An alcohol addiction may lead a person to start and/or conclude his or her day with an alcohol beverage. Over time, a person dealing with addiction may start to consume alcohol more frequently throughout the day. As an alcohol addiction worsens, the physical, psychological, and emotional damage can impact both an addiction and his or her loved ones.

Binge Drinking: What You Need to Know

For men, binge drinking refers to the consumption of five or more alcoholic beverages in a period of four hours or less. For women, binge drinking involves the consumption of four or more alcoholic beverages in a period of four hours or less.

A binge drinker may continuously drink without realizing the impact of his or her actions. If a person binges on alcohol regularly, he or she is prone to addiction.

What Are the Symptoms of Alcoholism?

A person can often diagnose an alcohol addiction on his or her own. Also, there are various symptoms associated with alcohol addiction, and these symptoms include: [2]

  • Inability to See the Problem: An alcohol addiction is oblivious to his or her alcohol abuse – despite the fact that his or her addiction is causing severe harm.
  • Tolerance: An individual builds up his or her tolerance to alcoholic beverages over time. As a result, this individual is better equipped than ever before to combat the side effects of alcohol use.
  • Physical Issues: Sweating, fatigue, and shaking are among the side effects that an alcoholic experiences after the effects of alcohol subside.
  • Inability to Stop: An alcohol addict may be unable to stop consuming alcohol – even if he or she feels the urge to stop drinking.
  • Alcohol Is Top of Mind: An alcoholic constantly thinks about consuming alcohol and looks for reasons to drink.

Alcohol addiction is a major challenge. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcohol addiction symptoms, treatment is available. By starting an alcohol abuse treatment, an individual can find the best ways to alleviate his or her addiction symptoms.

The Challenges Associated with Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Alcohol addiction sometimes feels like a losing battle, and getting treatment to address an alcohol addiction may prove to be a difficult. Yet people who understand the challenges associated with alcohol addiction may be able to help themselves or others get the support they need to overcome their addiction.

One of the primary reasons why alcohol addiction is tough to treat involves the prevalence of alcohol across the United States. The U.S. beverage industry was worth $182.6 billion in 2018, according to the American Beverage Association. Alcoholic beverages are key parts of the beverage industry and help drive this sector’s revenue. At the same time, the push for medical marijuana and legalization of marijuana in different states may fuel rising demand for alcohol.

The beverage industry lobbies hard, too. For example, the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America once spent $260,000 lobbying Congress and other federal agencies, the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States spent $1.3 million lobbying Congress, and The Beer Institute spent $250,000 lobbying Congress. These efforts show the commitment of alcohol companies to spend significant amounts of money to lobby federal regulators. Conversely, this spending may make it tough for people to look past the sheer volume of alcoholic beverages available and understand the underlying problems associated with alcohol addiction.

Eliminating alcohol from a person’s life is difficult as well. Alcohol is persistent, and once a person develops an alcohol addiction, overcoming this addiction is frequently an uphill battle. And if a person makes a single mistake during his or her addiction treatment and recovery, a relapse may occur, and the consequences may be dire.

What Are the Dangers Associated with Alcohol Withdrawal?

Alcohol withdrawal can be life-threatening. If a person has been a heavy alcohol user for several weeks, months, or years, withdrawal symptoms can escalate quickly.

Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may begin as soon as two hours after a person’s last drink. They vary from moderate to severe, and in some instances, may result in death. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may linger for several weeks as well.

Moderate alcohol withdrawal symptoms include shakiness and anxiety. Severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms include delirium tremens (DTs) and seizures. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms may occur without notice and must be addressed immediately [3].

If you or someone you know experiences alcohol withdrawal symptoms, consulting with a doctor is paramount. And if a person suffers fever, hallucinations, irregular heartbeat, or other severe signs of alcohol addiction during alcohol detox, call 911. At this point, an individual can explore alcohol rehab with medical supervision and begin alcohol detox.

Alcohol detox in a supervised setting minimizes risk, particularly for people who have experienced alcohol withdrawal episodes in the past or are dealing with serious health conditions.

Outpatient detox may be used to treat alcohol addicts dealing with a low risk of severe withdrawal. It enables an alcohol addict to receive ongoing monitoring to provide the necessary care to help an individual manage his or her addiction symptoms.

Medically managed inpatient detox is also available. This is generally used to treat individuals dealing with moderate to severe alcohol withdrawal symptoms. A medically managed inpatient detox program may involve the use of sedative medications to help an individual control his or her withdrawal symptoms. It requires an individual to receive 24-hour medical supervision and removes any stimuli that otherwise may trigger an individual’s addictive behaviors.

Additional treatment may be required following an alcohol detox program. Individuals often leave a detox program with a long-term plan in place to manage their addictive behaviors. That way, individuals can limit the risk of a relapse and take the necessary steps to enjoy an addiction-free life.

How Does Alcohol Detox Disrupt the Body?

Prolonged, heavy drinking disrupts the brain’s neurotransmitters, chemicals that transmit vital messages. For instance, GABA is neurotransmitter that helps the body feel calm and relaxed. Chronic alcohol consumption means the brain needs more alcohol than ever before to produce the effects an addict wants to achieve. Thus, when a person goes through alcohol detox, the body attempts to return to its normal activities. And in this instance, the body attempts to restore the natural production of GABA.

The severity of alcohol detox and withdrawal symptoms varies based on the person. If an individual has been dealing with prolonged and excessive alcohol abuse, the impact of alcohol detox and withdrawal symptoms can be severe.

The initial symptoms of alcohol withdrawal usually being within about six to 12 hour of a person’s last drink [3]. They may even start while alcohol in a person’s blood is still measurable. Common symptoms at this point include insomnia, nausea, vomiting, sweating, and anxiety.

Within 12 to 24 hours of a person’s last drink, withdrawal symptoms becomes more severe. Withdrawal symptoms at this time may include auditory, tactile, and visual hallucinations.

Full alcohol withdrawal may require anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks. On average, the effects of alcohol withdrawal disappear within about five to seven days of a person’s last drink.  

Ibogaine for Alcoholism

Ibogaine helps block cravings for alcohol and reducing alcohol consumption. It increases the levels of a brain protein called GDNF (glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor) to combat the effects of alcohol withdrawal. Also, using noribogaine as part of a post-ibogaine treatment helps reduce alcohol cravings and alleviate depression. And the spiritual component of ibogaine — the visions you may experience while undergoing  ibogaine treatment — enable a person to take an introspective approach. This component ensures an individual can focus on why he or she is struggling with alcohol addiction. It helps a person understand and process past events and traumas that contribute to self-medicating with alcohol and determine the best course of action to permanently address this issue.

 

Beat Your Alcohol Addiction Today

Articles About Alcohol Addiction Treatment

How to Break the Cycle of Alcohol Addiction

This article details the cycle of alcohol addiction, including how it works, what it’s like, what makes it happen, and most importantly, how someone trapped inside of it can break it. Particularly for people who have recovered from alcoholism and broken the cycle of alcohol addiction themselves, when they see their friends or loved ones fighting the same destructive alcohol addiction that they once struggled with (or are still coping with), this post offers important facts.

Sometimes the only missing ingredient standing in the way of recovery is motivation to get us through the process. Evidence-based advice and honest discussion can serve as that motivation for halting that dangerous cycle of alcohol addiction. Breaking the cycle is not ever going to be an easy thing to do. But it doesn’t have to be impossible with the right kinds of support.

Ibogaine for Alcohol Addiction: Does it Really Work?

You may be thinking, ibogaine is for treating serious drug addicts, like people who use heroin. So does ibogaine for alcohol addiction really work? This kind of question is especially likely to come up during a time when media attention to the American heroin epidemic is finally high—as it probably always should have been.

However, although there’s no doubt that we should be worried about drugs like heroin, addiction to alcohol is just as harmful, and at least as dangerous—maybe even more so, considering the fact that its legal and socially acceptable status gets it a pass in most circumstances. Even young people who use alcohol are usually seen as “no big deal.” But alcohol addiction is widespread and responsible for extensive health problems in our nation, and many deaths. This article deals with whether ibogaine works for alcohol addiction, providing the latest research into alcohol addiction, ibogaine, and neurochemistry, along with a frank discussion of using ibogaine to treat alcohol addiction.

How to Pick the Perfect Alcohol Addiction Treatment Center

Most alcohol abusers were once casual drinkers, social drinkers, who just wanted to have fun, fit in, or let off a little steam. No one pictures themselves years down the road, unable to function without alcohol, with tremors in their hands, and organs on the brink of failure. No one imagines the day they’ll be unable to drive because of DUIs, or out of a job and estranged from family because of their drinking. But that’s what alcohol addiction does—and usually no one notices until it’s too late, because abuse of alcohol is widespread in our society, and few people take it very seriously. No wonder it’s so hard to find the perfect alcohol treatment center.

With the right information, choosing the perfect alcohol treatment center is going to be much simpler. This blog provides advice on this crucial choice, from making certain you’ll receive the best medical and psychological care, to how to clarify your priorities and needs going into treatment. It also discusses ensuring that an alcohol treatment center approaches addiction with evidence and science, and offers the right mix of amenities that provide comfort and security.

Ibogaine – A Cure for Alcoholism?

This article introduces an early investigative news report that was one of the first introductions the American public had to the ibogaine story. This blog also discusses the story, offering supplemental history and facts to place the video into context. The newscasters describe ibogaine as a “cure” for alcohol addiction, and the post discusses that idea.

Like any addiction, alcohol addiction has no instantaneous cure. Ibogaine, however, is as close as anything gets to that goal, even for the longtime, serious heroin users interviewed in the news report. Alcohol addiction changes the chemistry of the brain, causing physical cravings, and this is what the ibogaine treatment “resets,” breaking the cycle.

When to Know to Seek Help for Alcohol Addiction

Why is asking for help so hard? Maybe, in part, it’s because our society doesn’t see alcohol addiction as being in the same class as addiction to other substances and illegal drugs, even though it too can be deadly and threaten loss of everything you care about. When you need assistance with alcohol addiction, it is difficult even to know it’s time to seek help. How can you be sure? After all, this all started with a few glasses of wine after work, or a few beers with friends.

This post discusses when to know to seek help for alcohol addiction. It offers a complete list of symptoms and signs of alcohol addiction, so you can cut through the fog of alcohol and what it tricks your mind into seeing. It also describes why those symptoms mean you need help.

Polysubstance Abuse Disorders and Ibogaine

Addiction to anything means a complex mix of problems are present, and this is also true for alcohol addiction. Addiction to alcohol plus other drugs means that the situation is even more complicated. This article details how to identify polysubstance abuse, provides details about the issues that characterize it, and explains how ibogaine can be used to manage polysubstance abuse. The blog also offers a deeper look at symptoms and signs of alcohol addiction and polysubstance addiction.

Don’t wait another day to get your life back. Find out what ibogaine treatment for alcohol addiction and polysubstance abuse disorders can do for you. Explore what you can expect from the recovery process and how to prepare for it.

Sources:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/addiction/alcohol
  2. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/addiction/what-is-alcohol-abuse#1
  3. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/addiction/alcohol-withdrawal-symptoms-treatments#1

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