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Alcoholism is defined as a chronic disorder or disease that is characterized by an inability to control drinking habits and behaviors, constantly thinking about alcohol, developing a tolerance for it, and feeling withdrawal symptoms and/or strong cravings if an attempt is made to reduce or stop consumption. Alcoholism is primarily characterized by compulsions and a sense of needing rather than wanting alcohol to function.
While all alcoholics at one time or another have abused alcohol, not all people who abuse alcohol are addicted. In other words, alcohol abuse can be a symptom of alcoholism, but is not a habit exclusive to alcoholism. There are two main types of alcohol abuse that you should be aware of, binge drinking and blackout drinking.
Binge drinking is the excessive consumption of alcohol that results in a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or higher. Blackout drinking, on the other hand, is excessive drinking to such an extent that a person loses their short-term memory and does not recall events of the time they were intoxicated. This does not mean the person passed out but rather means the person remained conscious but cannot recall their actions while intoxicated. Alcoholism can and almost always does include one or both of these forms of alcohol abuse. If you or someone you love is struggling with their sobriety, call Drug Treatment Centers McAllen at (956) 854-2342 today.
Alcohol intervention is the process that occurs when an addict’s friends, family, and/or other loved ones come together and sit down with them and bring their alcoholism to their attention. Oftentimes, this process involves a counselor or representative from a rehab facility that helps to mediate and facilitate an open discussion about the issues at hand.
An intervention is not meant to be confrontational, but rather is a forum to express
concern, support, and hopes that the addict will realize they have a problem and get help and treatment.
Alcohol detox is the time in which alcoholic abstains from drinking and eliminates the substance from their system. It is also the time period in which that person will go through alcohol withdrawals. Alcohol withdrawals can include intense cravings, nausea, vomiting, changes in heart rate and blood pressure, and other serious physical symptoms. Due to the potential seriousness of withdrawal symptoms and the strong cravings that accompany it, this process is best undertaken with medical supervision in a hospital or rehab facility.
In addition to supervised detox, alcohol treatment includes group, individual and family counseling. These therapies are meant to help identify the reasons a person developed an addiction to alcohol, treat and address those issues or problems, identify triggers, and develop coping mechanisms to maintain sobriety going forward. The 12-step program and alcoholics anonymous meetings are also important components to recovery. Additional therapies including chiropractic care and acupuncture can help with continued withdrawal symptoms while equine and art therapy can help to address emotional issues related to addiction and recovery.
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