4 Ways to Get Help for an Alcohol Addiction

Today more than ever, it is possible for people who are caught in the chokehold of addiction to break free. Help is plentiful. To learn ways you can reach out and receive needed care to save your life—or the life of your loved one—read on.

Find Sober Friends

Peer support is the cornerstone of a strong recovery. It buffers against stress and also improves resilience, according to the Mayo Clinic. Learning from others in a 12-Step group can also help you to feel less lonely and isolated. It is easy to feel judged by people who have never struggled with alcoholism. Walking into a roomful of people who have made similar mistakes—and learned from them—often brings welcome relief. Instead of judgment, you can feel hope. Connecting to a community is another way to stay active and healthy in recovery. When you have a strong network of like-minded friends who have been through similar hardships, you benefit from a bond of shared trials, tribulations, and challenges. You can also “borrow” hope and strength from others on days when your supply runs low. Sometimes simply telling someone that you are battling anxiety, depression or a simple case of the blues is enough to lift the cloud.

Get a Good Therapist

Getting sober from alcohol involves much more than detox and abstinence. It requires you to take a look at issues and unhealed emotional wounds that fuel addictive behavior. A good therapist can help you navigate these treacherous waters. Look for someone with a background in addiction and motivational interviewing, a technique with a proven track record. Pay attention to your instincts, too. A strong therapeutic alliance provides the foundation for a positive experience in therapy, say researchers at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Find someone you can work with by paying close attention during your first appointment. Although therapy can seem very uncomfortable and even awkward, if you and your chosen counselor are a good fit, the overall feeling you’ll have walking out of your session will be positive.

Consider Alternative Treatments

Many treatment centers offer alternative treatment approaches that are of a more holistic nature. For example, acupuncture has been shown to reduce symptoms related to withdrawal and detoxification—lowering negative mood states such as distractibility and anxiety, and reducing cravings and muscle aches. Biofeedback uses instruments to monitor a patient’s internal bodily processes such as muscle tension and heart rate. This allows the patient to regulate those processes. Other alternative recovery tools include the following:

  • Brain Wave Biofeedback – Alters brain wave patterns to restore patterns that have become disturbed by long-term substance abuse
  • Exercise – Regular exercise boosts mood, immunity, and self-esteem, while also improving sleep
  • Herbal Therapy – Many herbs have detoxification properties
  • Hypnosis – Promotes a state of heightened awareness that creates openness to ideas and suggestions that are compatible with a person’s recovery goals
  • Meditation – Quiets the mind and promotes relaxation and clarity
  • Nutrition – Diet and nutritional supplementation strengthen the immune system, improve mood, enhance the natural process of detoxification and restore balance
  • Prayer – Impacts healing by deepening inner spiritual awareness to increase a sense of hope and optimism, reduce feelings of powerlessness and isolation and enhance a deeper sense of safety and well-being

It is important to note that Harvard Health Publications writers recommend these methods as supplementary only. The mainstay of your plan to get—and stay—sober, should come from scientifically supported treatment methods.

Check Your Insurance Coverage

Your health is your top priority. But if you decide to seek professional treatment at a rehab facility, you will also need to pay attention to your bottom line. Thankfully, help is available for this task, too, free of charge. Most treatment facilities are staffed with professionals who can take down your insurance information, call the company, and help you understand your options. In most cases, determination about whether or not you qualify for coverage will be based on medical necessity. Criteria that qualifies you, according to the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), include the following:

  • Proof that the requested treatment is scientifically proven as effective for alcohol abuse and dependence
  • Evidence that the requested treatment is necessary for both diagnosis and treatment of alcohol abuse and dependence
  • Ample proof that the treatment is necessary—not just convenient

In addition to these core components, most insurance companies stipulate that the treatment you are requesting is not more expensive than other equally effective treatments that cost less.

Getting Help for Alcohol Addiction

If you or someone you love abuses alcohol, we can help. Admissions coordinators are available at our toll-free, 24 hour helpline to guide you to wellness. Don’t go it alone when help is just one phone call away. You never have to go back to a life of addiction. Please call today.

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