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Stopping Alcohol Addiction

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How does a person go about stopping alcohol addiction?

If you think that you are addicted to alcohol, recognizing that you have a problem is the first step in getting help and stopping your alcohol dependency.

Most Addicts Need Professional Help for Recovery

While many individuals think that they can kick their addiction habit on their own, regrettably, this is not the answer for most people.

If you believe that you have an alcohol problem, find someone you trust and discuss the issues with him or her.

To help you to open up and disclose your situation to someone, it might be a good idea to first talk to a friend or to someone who is close to you in age.

Hopefully such discussions will lead you to discuss your alcohol problem with an adult who is nonjudgmental, supportive, and understanding.

If you can't talk to your parents, you may want to approach a relative, religious leader, school counselor, doctor, favorite teacher, or an employees assistance program representative at work.

Note that many experts in the field openly state that the first person you should consider discussing your addiction problem with is your family doctor.

Doctors are trained to be nonjudgmental and objective and have a good general understanding of the effects of chemical dependency on the body.

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Such characteristics are important for finding the best way to help you overcome your dependency.

Honesty and Seeing Your Healthcare Professional

Sadly, overcoming chemical dependence is not easy.

Remember that from a psychological perspective, however, it's a sign of strength to realize that you cannot quit drugs or alcohol on your own and might need professional help from a trained drug counselor, psychologist, or therapist.

In fact most people who try to quit taking drugs or alcohol need professional help or treatment programs in order to be successful.

If you discuss your dependency problem with your doctor, he or she will probably set up an appointment for you to see someone who is trained in the field of chemical dependency.

When you visit such a person, he or she will ask you numerous questions about your alcohol or drug use.

In addition, you will probably undergo a complete physical examination.

It is sometimes difficult to understand this, but being as honest and as open as possible during the questioning phase and during the physical exam arms the health care provider with the information he or she needs for an accurate assessment, diagnosis, and treatment plan.

Based on your answers to the health care provider's questions and upon the physical exam, it may be concluded that you are indeed, addicted to either drugs, alcohol, or both.

At this point, your health care professional will discuss your treatment options.

Keep in mind that chemical dependency experts, like all other specialists, will make various recommendations and suggestions regarding your situation.

You, however, will need to be actively involved in the decision-making process if your treatment is to be successful.

Addiction Treatment Options

Typical treatment options for chemical dependency include detox (to eliminate the toxins in the body), taking prescription medications (to help prevent a relapse once the drug or alcohol use has stopped), and some sort of counseling or psychotherapy (to help the person understand his or her dependency "triggers" and to learn different responses that are unrelated to drugs or alcohol).

Such forms of treatment typically take place in a residential treatment facility, in a hospital, or on an outpatient basis.

Due to the impact of the dependent person's behavior on family members, many dependency programs provide family therapy and/or marital counseling as part of the treatment plan.

If your addiction is to alcohol, part of your treatment may include going to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings on a regular basis.

The Alcoholics Anonymous recovery program is based on a spiritual framework that, along with support from other alcoholics, has helped millions of individuals attain sobriety.

On the other hand, the Alcoholics Anonymous approach may not be for everyone.

As a result, other recovery approaches are available, including Jewish, Christian, and more secular programs.

It is interesting to note that people who have gained benefits from Alcoholics Anonymous often times find other programs that, in combination with Alcoholics Anonymous, work best for them.

Some of these programs include medical care and group and individual counseling.

For many, the expense of professional therapy and residential treatment programs makes these options unavailable.

Under these circumstances, the self-help, support-group approach (like AA) and other community resources provide viable treatment options.

Conclusion: Stopping Alcohol Addiction

A number of people think that stopping alcohol addiction is relatively easy.

While many of these individuals think that they can kick their addiction habit on their own, regrettably, this is not the case for most people.

If you face the possibility that you are alcohol dependent, it is important for you to find someone you trust so that you can discuss your alcohol issues with him or her.

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It must be noted, however, that many alcohol addiction experts openly state that the first person you should consider discussing your alcohol problem with is your family doctor. Why?

Not only because doctors are trained to remain objective and nonjudgmental, but also because medical doctors have a good overall understanding of the effects of alcohol addiction on the body.

Furthermore, most health care practitioners and physicians know where to get additional help, if necessary.

Remember this: if you think you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, recognizing that you have a problem is the first step in getting help and stopping your addiction.

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