Alcoholism is more than just drinking too much. It is a mental and physical addiction to alcohol. It is not a choice. Many people that do not understand alcoholism seem to think that people can just quit if they want to. Unfortunately, it is not that easy. Once someone has become addicted to alcohol, the choice to drink or not no longer exists. The physical addiction that comes with alcoholism makes it physically impossible to stop drinking safely, without a doctor’s care and instruction.
When people are addicted to alcohol, it is unusual for them to continue managing their life successfully. They tend to stop enjoying and participating in activities they were previously involved in. People addicted to alcohol are skilled at hiding their issues and it may be difficult to determine just how much of a problem someone has. You may not ever see them take a drink, or appear intoxicated, but eventually, those close to them will notice. When researching options to help either yourself or a loved one with an addiction problem, the most important thing to remember is that you are not alone. Alcohol addiction is a disease that plagues millions of people each year. It is a disease that is just as difficult to deal with for the people surrounding the individual as it is for the actual addict. Maybe even more difficult.
Addiction is a problem for the addict and others. The repercussions that come up with alcoholism include the following.
- health issues
- social relationships
- family relationships
- issues at work
Increasing the Odds of Success
Outpatient treatment can be a very successful program for some people. The most important thing with any treatment is for the person to be ready to actively try to stop drinking. Other people making the choice for them isn’t going to make it very likely that the lifestyle change will last, even if it is temporarily successful. The alcoholic has to be ready to change. Some traits that people possess can make the chance for successful treatment more likely. Long-term avoidance of alcohol is increased when certain characteristics are represented.
- Marriage – People that are married tend to stay sober more consistently than single people. Perhaps someone to be accountable to and to encourage makes the difference.
- Gender – Women have a higher success rate than men.
- Age – The older the addict is, the better the chance of staying sober.
- Social Standing – Those with a higher level of education, greater income and property owners have a better success rate than those with less.
- Family History – People with no previous family history of alcoholism tend to have more success with treatment than those with. Having a sibling or parent with the disease increases the likelihood of rehab being ineffective.
- Mental and Personality Issues – The presence of another mental or personality condition makes it less likely to successfully stop drinking.
Some professionals will argue that alcohol dependency is a symptom of a greater psychological problem in addition to being a disease by itself. They feel that without treatment of the underlying issue that the relief will only be temporary. They may have short-term success but the return to their previous condition seems to be inevitable.
Outpatient rehab has many benefits that make it more likely for the alcoholic to succeed. Being treated as an outpatient allows the person to continue to work and support themselves or their families. If they are in college, they would be able to continue their studies and not have to delay their graduation by missing time in class. It is not as disruptive or time-consuming as inpatient treatment.
Another benefit to outpatient treatment is that the patient is still able to be close to their support system. Their friends and family will be able to initiate and continue their support without any intermission.
Finally, the cost of the treatment is much less for outpatient treatment. The patient can still receive high-quality treatment at a fraction of the cost they would pay for inpatient care.
The bottom line is that success depends on the determination of the alcohol-dependent person. They have to want to take back control of their lives. They need to recognize the choices and behavior that led to the problem and to modify those to increase their chance for success. They need to be aware that continued treatment to follow up and maintain their alcohol-free status is needed for ongoing success. Whether for yourself or a loved one, don’t be afraid to take that first step for an addiction-free life. The rewards are worth it. Contact us today at 833-762-3765 and we can help guide you.