Alcohol addiction treatment exists and helps many people to recover, But are there alternatives you can explore if you do not want to go through the conventional method? Read on to find out.
Alcoholism is a complicated condition to understand, just like drug addiction in general. The fact remains that it is a chronic disease, and it affects your brain in many ways, making it very difficult to quit – so getting help through treatment makes logical sense. However, what happens when you do not want or cannot go through the conventional treatment methods for various reasons?
There is no need to lose hope, as there are some alternatives you can explore. The traditional method will mainly involve stopping you from drinking in the first place, through two methods – either going cold turkey, or gradually reducing your alcohol intake. It can also involve a doctor prescribing medication that suppresses your alcohol cravings.
When dealing with some alcohol addiction cases though, especially the long-term ones, conventional treatments might not work; at least, not exactly the way you think. This is because the withdrawal symptoms are more severe, and can lead to death or affecting the functioning of the brain. This brings the rise of alternative treatments, which can improve the chances of full recovery. Here are some of them.
Quitting any drug, even alcohol, will need a lot of self-discipline and commitment to the journey of sobriety. For many people suffering from the condition, drinking is a form of coping mechanism from the stress associated with daily life. This also results I some people using medication as a method of replacing drinking, which may make the situation worse.
On the other hand, meditation can be a good way to teach you to focus your energy on important things. It is a more positive method of relieving stress, as opposed to using medication (and raising your chances of abusing it).
The main method of meditation is taking some minutes off to focus, such as repeating some positive thoughts in your mind or reminding yourself that everything is in control. For instance, telling yourself that you will be dedicated to live a healthier lifestyle can be a positive thing. You can also picture yourself having succeeded in going through alcohol addiction treatment, and how good you feel when you quit the substance.
If you are familiar with traditional Chinese medicine, you have likely heard t=of this particular technique. It not only deals with pain in certain areas of the body, but can also be a useful tool in overcoming addiction problems, since its main aim is to restore the body’s sense of balance. Many people also utilize it to deal with depression and relieve pain, and even smoking problems (according to the NCCAM, or National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine).
However, keep in mind that the evidence regarding the effectiveness of acupuncture in dealing with alcoholism problems is more of anecdotes, compared to concrete research efforts. The main belief of those who practice the technique is that it can help the body to detox, particularly the liver. Since the liver is mostly affected when a person has an alcohol addiction, this benefit could be true.
There is no definite research that shows the benefits of using acupuncture in treating alcoholism. You do not need to be scared off by this though; as long as an experienced medical professional does it, you will not go through any health risks. For that reason, you must never do it on your own.
Among the many side effects of withdrawal from alcohol is poor quality sleep, similar to what happens during a hangover. A person who is addicted to alcohol has a higher risk of also developing a sleep disorder, which includes insomnia and sleep apnea.
To deal with this, there is a certain form of therapy known as bright light therapy or phototherapy, and it involves exposing the person to very bright light during the usual waking time. In fact, this is a common treatment when a person is suffering from seasonal affective disorder. This treatment has two main benefits: it restores the normal sleeping cycle of the body, and also decreases the symptoms of depression.
This form of therapy is also backed by scientific research, as they have proved its effectiveness even when compared to the conventional treatment programs.
Use of certain herbs
For more than a thousand years, there has been the use of certain herbs in Chinese medicine to help in reducing excessive levels of alcohol consumption, especially using the herb called kudzu. This is a plant that is considered a weed within the United States, but scientific studies have shown it can actually improve the reduction of alcohol consumption.
This is due to an ingredient within the herb known as puerarin, which improves the blood flow to the brain. This makes you feel satisfied, even when you take less amounts of beer or alcohol.
However, you need to take care when you are considering herbal treatment. Do not do it without the clearance from your doctor, since some herbs can have very serious effects if you are taking medication or reducing your alcohol intake.
You may not realize it immediately, but your nutritional health is affected adversely by alcohol intake. Many people who take alcohol also happen to be malnourished in some way, so doctors can also incorporate nutritional therapy sessions to help your body recover.
The more healthy choices you make in terms of your food intake, the stronger you will feel – which in turn will help you reduce your drinking cravings. If you are not sure of what to do, you can work with a dietician to help you identify healthy foods you can consume.
Regardless of the treatment method you choose to follow, it needs to assist you to recover from alcohol abuse. There are the conventional methods, such as going to a rehabilitation center for alcohol addiction treatment. However, there are other methods you can explore, as long as you follow the advice of your doctor when selecting them.