If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol abuse, then you may want to consider alcohol rehab as a means of breaking this devastating and deadly addiction. Overcoming alcoholism takes far more than just quitting “cold turkey” and moving on with one’s life. There needs to be a radical overhaul in a person’s lifestyle, attitude and overall health. If you have chosen to stop abusing alcohol, you will need professional help in order to make sure that you stay on the path of sobriety.
Some people enter alcohol rehabilitation programs at the urging of their friends and family, while many may choose it of their own accord. Others may join a treatment program due to a court order. Regardless of the reason, you or or your loved one will have to be willing and active participants in the recovery process in order for treatment to be successful. If you are not ready to begin working towards beating an addiction to alcohol, you may end up wasting the time and effort you put into the rehabilitation program. The first and most important step is admitting that you have a problem with alcohol use.
What Happens in Alcohol Rehab?
Alcohol rehabilitation programs are designed to provide a multi-faceted, multi-step approach to recovery. As with any medical treatment facility, your privacy and confidentiality are of the highest value. While some facilities may offer more services than others, all alcohol rehab programs will offer support, guidance and professional advice. These programs also provide one-on-one support between you and a healthcare professional. In these sessions, you will explore the reasons for your addiction to alcohol and work towards developing coping mechanisms that do not involve substance abuse. By understanding why you abused alcohol, you can start to form arguments against future use and ensure that you stay sober in the future.
Group support sessions are also quite common in alcohol rehab programs. By meeting other people who have similar issues with addiction, you can start to form new relationships with others that do not focus on the consumption of alcohol. These friendships will become extremely valuable once you complete the program and re-enter society, where you may be faced with the temptation to relapse.
You may also have an opportunity to engage in extra-curricular activities during your time in a treatment program. Arts and crafts are commonly used as a means to help patients express their feelings, which in time can become another healthy coping mechanism. Many inpatient facilities also offer opportunities for fitness and exercise, as these activities have a positive effect on mental health.
Outpatient and inpatient therapy are the two options for those seeking an alcohol rehab program. In an outpatient program, you participate in sessions while going about your regular routine. Inpatient treatment is radically different and is probably the most beneficial choice for those who are ready to embark on a path of recovery.
Why Should I Choose Inpatient Therapy?
Unlike outpatient therapy, an inpatient program is full-time. You do not go home or go to work while you are participating in an inpatient alcohol rehabilitation program. Programs can last anywhere from 30 days to 90 days, and the amount of time you stay in the facility is determined either by what you feel is best or what medical and legal professionals have determined is your best option. In some cases, the length of your stay may be determined by cost. These facilities are located across the country and you do not have to attend a program in your area if you do not wish to do so. In fact, it may be more beneficial to attend an alcohol rehab facility that is relatively far away from where you live.
The biggest advantage of such an approach to alcohol rehab is that you are not presently in the surroundings where you abused alcohol. Removing the emotional links to the environment and acquaintances that you associated with alcohol use can lessen the chances of a relapse and can increase your chances of success where life-long sobriety and recovery are concerned.
In addition, you will have full medical supervision during the initial period of alcohol withdrawal. This is incredibly important, as withdrawal can be fatal if someone has been abusing alcohol for a long time. This is because prolonged excess alcohol consumption can disrupt transmitters in your brain. As your body builds a tolerance to the alcohol you are consuming, it disrupts other important bodily processes in order to compensate. If you stop drinking straight away, your brain’s response can trigger some of the following symptoms:
– Nausea and vomiting
– Shaking hands
These symptoms are commonly referred to as Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome when they occur after a person stops drinking heavily. Being left alone or unsupervised during this time can dramatically increase the risk of death from a seizure. During inpatient therapy, you will have access to medical personnel during the physically demanding withdrawal period. Outpatient programs do not always provide the same option to their participants, and may require that you fully “detox” from alcohol before joining a treatment program. If you have a significant alcohol abuse problem, this may end up wasting precious recovery time.
Finally, studies have shown that people who participate in inpatient therapy are less likely to relapse and return to heavy drinking than if they joined an outpatient program. While the treatment costs associated with an inpatient program are higher than that of an outpatient program, the cost-effectiveness ratio is solidly in favor of the first option. If you are less likely to relapse after a rehab program, then you are also less likely to enter another program in the future. Simply put, it makes sense to opt for inpatient alcohol rehab if you are serious about your recovery.
How Will I Pay for Inpatient Therapy?
Many people who are struggling with alcohol abuse are afraid to seek help because they do not know if they can pay for treatment. The good news is that many inpatient therapy programs are covered by many different medical insurance providers.
If you are uninsured or your provider does not cover some or all of the cost of treatment, then you still do not have to worry about not being able to pay. Many inpatient treatment centers are willing to work with you on a financing plan that best suits your situation. The goal of the treatment providers is to make sure that you or your loved one gets the help they need in order to fight their addiction to alcohol.
What Happens Next?
After you finish your inpatient program, you will leave the facility and integrate back into daily life. This is another critical point in the recovery process, and you will need the help of addiction specialists, support groups and the people around you if you want to avoid a relapse. Your inpatient treatment program may ask you to participate in outpatient sessions with one of their healthcare professionals. You may even be required to do so as part of your treatment plan.
After your time at the alcohol rehab program is finished, the staff who oversaw your recovery will typically recommend local support groups for you to join. You may also be put in touch with a mentor who can help you balance your recovery journey with the demands and pressures of everyday life. At this point, your sobriety is your responsibility, but this does not mean that you will be left to manage things by yourself.
Inpatient Alcohol Rehab: the Key to a Sober and Successful Future
Recovery is a constant process, and you may always be working towards a lifestyle that does not rely on alcohol as a means of coping or socializing. It is hard work, but you can build a solid foundation on your experiences and techniques that you acquired in an inpatient alcohol rehab facility.
Many people have a false notion of alcohol rehab facilities as being expensive luxury retreats for celebrities or people with a lot of money. This could not be further from the truth. People from all walks of life enter into alcohol rehab every day, as alcohol abuse can affect anyone at any time. Your social status, economic class, race or religion are not what determines whether or not you can enter an inpatient treatment program. It is true that some rehab facilities have quite a lot of extracurricular activities or perks available, but all programs have a common goal of helping their patients live full and happy lives.
If you think that you or a loved one has a problem with alcohol addiction, then you should strongly consider exploring the possibility of entering an inpatient alcohol rehab program. It will take hard work and effort, but with help you can live a full, happy and sober life.
Marilyn Kegley works with several addiction treatment centers to educate individuals about the dangers of substance abuse. After watching numerous loved ones struggle with addiction, her goal is to help as many people as possible get effective and successful rehabilitation treatment. To learn more about alcohol rehab, please visit: http://www.serenityrehab.org/blog/alcohol/how-alcohol-affects-the-brain/