Those who drink excessive amounts of alcohol are at risk of developing physical dependence, swiftly followed by addiction. However, it can be hard for many to see alcohol as being a harmful substance, particularly when it is legal and socially acceptable in modern society. So admitting that your use of alcohol has spiralled out of control can be a tough ask.
Due to the stigma still attached to addiction, most of those finding themselves in the grip of alcoholism will practice denial to some extent. There is a huge amount of shame and embarrassment felt by many of those who allow their use of alcohol, or any other mood-altering substance for that matter, to spiral out of control. Many sufferers hope that by ignoring the problem, it will simply go away. The idea of having to go through a process of detoxification and rehab is something that does not bear thinking about.
Nevertheless, when it comes to alcoholism, treatment is usually necessary when it comes to getting better. It is difficult to break the cycle of abuse without professional help, and those that do manage to quit alcohol by themselves often have a shaky recovery and therefore a much higher risk of relapse. Individuals who complete a detox and rehab programme and follow that on with ongoing maintenance have a much greater chance of long-term success.
Having said that, the issue of what to expect during alcohol rehab can often be an obstacle to recovery. Many people fear the process of treatment and worry that they will find it too difficult. They would rather not try than make the effort and fail.
Why is Treatment Necessary for Alcoholism?
If you have an alcohol problem, you might be wondering what to expect during alcohol rehab if you choose to go this route. On the other hand, you may also be hoping that your problem will rectify itself somehow so that you can avoid rehab altogether.
Unfortunately, addiction does not pass on its own. For most, treatment is necessary, and this includes both detox and rehabilitation.
You could be thinking about what will happen if you do nothing. Because you are possibly worried about what to expect during alcohol rehab, you may be thinking that you can avoid the issue completely. While there is no way to tell exactly what will happen until the process actually begins, there are certain situations that are highly likely to occur if you do not get help.
For example, you may not have noticed any major health problems so far, but you should know that if you continue to abuse alcohol, you are likely to have major health worries later in life. Alcohol affects almost every single cell in the body and it is not possible to regularly abuse it without damage being done. Your internal organs, for example, may already be suffering the effects of your alcohol abuse.
Alcoholism is linked to health conditions such as liver disease, kidney disease, heart disease, and several forms of cancer. It will also be having a major impact on your brain and mental health in general. As time goes by, the risk of developing depression, anxiety, and even dementia will increase dramatically. It is vital, therefore, that you seek help as soon as possible.
What Happens During Alcohol Treatment
There is no need to be worried about treatment for alcoholism. You might be concerned about what to expect during alcohol rehab, but you have no need to feel frightened. Rehab is the process that will help you to learn more about your illness. Before you can even attempt rehabilitation though, you will need to complete detoxification to help you quit alcohol.
Detox is a natural process that is employed by the body when you stop drinking alcohol. When your body realises that no more alcohol is forthcoming, it will begin the process of eliminating the toxins that have accumulated over your time drinking. It will also start the healing process, but as it re-learns how to function without alcohol once more, you are likely to experience a range of withdrawal symptoms as it does so
It is these withdrawal symptoms associated with alcohol detox that often prevent many affected individuals from reaching out for help with their addiction. Then there are those afraid of what rehab will be like or what it will mean for them as they return to everyday life.
In terms of the withdrawal symptoms associated with detox, these can be mild, moderate, or severe in intensity. Most people will experience mild to moderate symptoms, but even these can be quite uncomfortable to go through. A small number of individuals will experience the most severe symptoms which, in certain circumstance, without treatment can end up being life-threatening.
Thankfully, the worst symptoms can be prevented when the process is completed in a supervised detox facility where medical staff can prescribe medication if appropriate. Your diet and nutritional needs will also be addressed as it may be the case that you are deficient in certain vitamins and minerals. Deficiencies can often lead to the onset of more severe symptoms during the detox process.
What Happens in Rehab
Worrying about what to expect during alcohol rehab is something that affects many people needing help for alcoholism. Many of these actually confuse the detox and rehab processes and believe that rehab is going to be a painful process.
The truth is that rehab is rarely painful – at least not physically. However, it can be an emotional time and it is for this reason that you need to have a clear mind and body before you begin. When it does, a series of therapy and counselling sessions will help you learn all about your addiction and why you were affected.
It will be necessary to get to the root of your problem. This can be an emotional process as you may have to delve deep into your past to unearth the reasons you became addicted in the first place. While for some people the cause of their illness is obvious, for others it may take a lot of work to identify the cause.
During rehab, you are likely to take part in both individual and group therapy sessions. These sessions will be used to help you identify the triggers of your addictive behaviour. When you know what your cues are, you can then learn new ways of dealing with them as and when they arise.
A big part of rehab is learning about relapse prevention. You are likely to be taught various skills and methods that you can take with you when you return to normal everyday living. You can then use the skills you have learned to avoid temptations and triggers.
Once rehab is over, you will be expected to return to normal life; this transition is tough for most people. It is difficult to leave the comfort and security of a treatment facility, and many individuals worry that they will revert to their old ways.
Fortunately, support is available during this transition. Your rehab provider is likely to offer aftercare support to ensure that you cope with the move back to independent sober living, and you can also get involved with support groups within your own local community. Mutual support groups are considered an important part of the recovery process. They will give you the opportunity to meet regularly with other recovering addicts, and they are a fantastic resource in terms of helping you to maintain your sobriety long-term.
If you would like more information on what to expect during alcohol rehab or on any other part of the recovery process, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us here at Primrose Lodge. Our fully trained advisors will take your call and answer any questions you might have. They can also provide information and advice on your treatment options. Please call today to find out more.