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Alcohol Abuse UK Proven Strategies - Get Control Of Drink

Lisa Taylor
Lisa TaylorAddiction Counsellor

Our 24-hour helpline is a resource you can use to find and access treatment for alcohol abuse. UK residents throughout England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland contact us every day looking for assistance with drinking problems. We are happy to help. We work with our clients and their families to figure out what kinds of treatments are best and, when necessary, connect them with those treatments.

We say 'when necessary' because not everyone who calls us truly has a drinking problem. Not every person who misuses alcohol is suffering from alcohol abuse. This is why we offer free evaluations to anyone who calls the helpline. We use a number of recognised screening tools to determine whether or not a person has a genuine drinking problem. If so, those screening tools help us to determine how severe the problem is.

Are you concerned you might have a drinking problem? We invite you to call for a free evaluation. We would appreciate the opportunity to set your mind at ease in the event that our screening reveals you are doing okay. Likewise, we would like the opportunity to help you find professional treatment if you are suffering from alcohol abuse.

Strategies for the Problem Drinker

People who are problem drinkers rather than alcohol abusers or alcoholics usually have an easier time getting their issues under control. Also known as hazardous drinking, problem drinking is characterised by regularly exceeding the recommended levels of safe drinking without routinely binging or getting drunk. Some of the strategies we might recommend include:

  • Prescription Medications – A doctor can prescribe one of several prescription medications that can help control alcohol cravings. These drugs work by inhibiting the production of certain brain chemicals responsible for producing cravings. They can be effective in people who do their utmost to cut down on alcohol consumption.
  • Support Group Participation – People tend to think that alcohol support groups are only for alcoholics and alcohol abusers. Nothing could be further from the truth. Even problem drinkers are welcome to participate. An alcohol support group is a great place to find accountability and camaraderie; most support groups also provide a plethora of information about drinking problems and how to overcome them.
  • Counselling – Problem drinkers can benefit from counselling as well. Professional counselling helps a person understand how alcohol affects the body and mind; it also serves as a way of developing strategies to divert one's attention away from alcohol and toward healthier things.

It is important for us to let you know that problem drinking that remains ignored can lead to alcohol abuse. UK rehab clinics know this all too well. Every alcoholic who has ever passed through their doors was, at one time, a problem drinker who did not take steps to curb his or her drinking in the past.

Strategies for Alcohol Abusers and Alcoholics

Treatment for problem drinking is relatively straightforward. It can be supplied by doctors, therapists, counsellors and even alcohol charities. But what about the person who goes on to develop alcohol abuse or addiction? Treatment is still possible, but it is more involved and more intense.

Alcohol abuse is characterised by regularly exceeding recommended levels of safe drinking along with regular bouts of drunkenness and binging. An alcohol abuser is typically just a few steps away from all out addiction. It is for that reason that there is some overlap in the kinds of treatments available for both conditions.

Experts who deal with alcoholism and alcohol abuse in the UK are known to use a number of strategies that have proved successful in getting control of drinking habits. These include:

  • Outpatient Rehab – Depending on the severity of an alcohol abuse problem, some people can be very successfully treated with an outpatient rehab programme. This kind of programme is one that includes prescription medications, health monitoring by a nurse or doctor, and regular counselling sessions at a local clinic.
  • Medical Detox – Alcoholism is the worst of the three recognised drinking problems. It is characterised by dependence on the drug. Overcoming this dependence starts with a medical detox programme that separates the drinker from alcohol. Modern detox is medically supervised and aided with prescription medications.
  • Counselling Therapies – Rehab clinics throughout the UK take advantage of a long list of counselling therapies to help alcohol abusers and alcoholics overcome. Examples of counselling therapies include cognitive behavioural therapy, psycho-educational therapy, and psycho-dynamic therapy. Therapists can choose from among all of their options to find the best therapies for each patient.
  • 12-Step Work – Since its inception in the late 1930s, the classic 12-step programme has helped millions of alcoholics the world over. The 12-step programme requires participants to be honest about who they are and who they want to be as people. It also forces them to take responsibility for themselves and their actions.

We would strongly encourage you not to attempt to overcome a serious drinking problem by yourself. Drinking too much from time to time as a casual drinker is one thing, but working through a clinically diagnosed drinking problem is an entirely different matter. Once a person reaches a level of problem drinking requiring clinical diagnosis, it is a serious enough problem to necessitate professional treatment.

Withdrawing from Alcohol

The person diagnosed as either an alcohol abuser or alcoholic will experience definite withdrawal symptoms during detox. These withdrawal symptoms can include nausea and vomiting, headache, increased heart rate, tremors, and trouble sleeping. What you need to know is that the withdrawal symptoms can accelerate very quickly and develop into something known as delirium tremens.

What is delirium tremens? It is an extremely serious condition characterised by excessively high heart rate and body temperature, seizures, and hallucinations that can be visual, auditory and tactile. The onset of delirium tremens is considered a medical emergency because of its potential for causing serious injuries or death. Please do not attempt to detox by yourself if you have been clinically diagnosed as an alcohol abuser or alcoholic. Please see a professional about medically supervised detox.

All of the private rehab clinics we work with offer patients medically supervised detox. Throughout the 7-to-10-day process, patients are constantly monitored by medical professionals who have been trained to handle any complications that may arise. Your physical health will be monitored from start to finish.

Choosing an outpatient rehab programme that includes detox will also include some measure of medical monitoring. But with an outpatient programme, things work a little bit differently. Rather than staying at the rehab facility for 7 to 10 days, a person undergoing outpatient treatment visits a local clinic on a daily basis. While there, a registered nurse performs a routine health exam and administers the next round prescription medications.

As you can see, there are multiple strategies used by professionals to treat alcoholism and alcohol abuse. UK rehab clinics employ these strategies, as do alcohol charities, the NHS, and other treatment providers. If you or someone you love is battling a drinking problem, we encourage you to contact us right away. We will get you in touch with a local clinic capable of treating you as soon as possible. They will treat you using the most effective strategies for your circumstances.

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