Alcoholism is a persistent disease of the body and brain. It may start off as alcohol abuse; if allowed to continue, though, abuse often transitions to addiction, with life-altering consequences.
If you or a loved one are struggling with alcoholism, seek alcohol rehab treatment. Call Alcohol Drug Treatment Jackson at (601) 326-1554 for help today.
While occasional binge drinking doesn’t necessarily put one on the path to addiction, it’s a strong possibility. According to the NIH, nearly one in three of the nation’s population over the age of 18 indulges in binge drinking each month.
When a person routinely abuses alcohol, they can, over time, begin to constantly need alcohol to feel normal and to function. They are unable to quit even when they realize that their drinking affects their personal and professional life. If left unattended, addiction is not far off.
Alcohol acts on various parts of the brain, and stimulates the release of pleasure producing hormones. Over time, the brain becomes deeply dependent on these hormones, and loses the ability to function without them. This is the state of addiction.
Since the brain’s hormones affect logic and thought as well, addicts can find it very difficult to muster their reason and willpower in order to act against addiction.
Today, rehabilitation is the only scientifically valid strategy in existence against the powerful force that is of addiction. It’s important to make sure that you find a rehab center that is run on scientific principles, though. Not every rehab center offers quality programs run on scientific principles.
Until a few decades ago, alcohol abuse and addiction were simply seen as personal failings. Treatment consisted of locking people up and threatening them with dire consequences if they didn’t quit. Gratefully, medical science has along since then. Today, effective, evidence-based alcohol rehab programs exist that treat addiction through medications and therapy.
While different alcohol rehab programs use different methods, the basic plan is always a two-pronged approach. In their first step, patients enter a detoxification program where they are moved away from temptation, and placed in an environment that is free of alcohol. Doctors closely monitor their health to watch out for withdrawal symptoms. When these symptoms occur, they treat them with medications that directly work on parts of the brain that alcohol addiction affects.
Once the brain and body have had time to adjust to life without drugs for a few weeks, patients are ready to re-emerge into life. At this point they begin therapy.
Some experts believe that the therapeutic treatment that follows detoxification is the most important part of alcohol rehab. Through these treatments, patients focus on their tendency to turn to substance abuse to overcome their problems.
Over months of cognitive behavioral therapy, family therapy and other forms of training, patients to focus on their motivations in alcohol abuse, and learn strategies by which they may overcome them. Without therapy, patients coming out of detoxification are likely to turn to alcohol again.
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