5 Steps Toward Alcohol Addiction Recovery
If you are an alcoholic, then you know the destruction that alcohol causes in your life. Your relationships have suffered, your job performance has declined and your financial situation went downhill. Even if you have tried to stop drinking, you physically can’t because of the pain and danger of alcohol withdrawal. So what are you supposed to do to break away from addiction? Here are five steps to getting yourself to the other side of addiction.
Step #1: Find a Treatment Center
If you look up treatment centers for alcoholism, you are going to get thousands of hits. This can be overwhelming, but don’t give up. You can’t do this alone and that’s OK. Sometimes you need help to get help. If you don’t have a specific alcohol rehab center in mind, it’s best to call an addiction helpline. These helplines do the research for you and match you with a rehab that meets your criteria. They also verify insurance and coordinate travel arrangements for you. This removes the difficult details, leaving you with the task of packing and preparing for what’s to come.
Step #2: Alcohol Detox
Alcohol detox is the first step of the recovery process. This is different from alcohol rehab. Alcohol detox is the process of removing toxins from the body that are contaminating the system because of habitual drinking. This can take a few days or up to a week depending on the amount of alcohol you would drink or how long you have been drinking. Medically supervised detox is a safer option than going through it by yourself because alcohol withdrawal can be painful and even dangerous. In a medically supervised detox, doctors, nurses and psychiatrists monitor you to make you are as comfortable as possible.
Step #3: Alcohol Rehab
Immediately after completing alcohol detox, you should enter alcohol rehab. The longer you wait after detox to enter rehab, the greater your risk of drinking again. Alcohol rehab is where the real work begins. Your treatment team (doctors, psychiatrist, therapist and social worker) come up with a personalized treatment plan that fits your needs. This plan will list goals for you to work toward and ways to achieve them. This will be discussed regularly and adjusted as needed. When you are in rehab, you begin to address the underlying issues that trigger you to drink. The skills you learn here help you keep you sober after you enter the “real world.”
Step #4: Aftercare Treatment Plan
So you have been rehab for some time and will be finishing the program soon. That doesn’t mean that your recovery process ends there or that you are left on your own. You and your treatment team will work together to make an aftercare treatment plan that will fit your needs after you leave rehab. Whether you decide to continue in a sober living program or simply attend AA meetings, you know exactly what to do after you finish the alcohol rehab program.
Step #5: Support System
Now that you know what to do when you finish alcohol rehab, you should build a support system. This is a group of positive people that will help you remain sober and encourage you. If you surround yourself with people who care for your well-being, you stand a better chance of living a life free of alcohol.
Recovery requires constant work, but it is a job that is worth taking. You will have a strong foundation for your recovery if you use the skills learned in rehab, follow your aftercare plan and surround yourself with positive people.