Are you addicted to drinking? It can sometimes be difficult to distinguish between low-risk drinking and harmful drinking. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you drink for pleasure, or as a way of escaping?
- Does drinking cause you health, social or economic problems?
If you answer “yes” to both, you may have a dangerous addiction to alcohol. If you’re still unsure, you can always speak to your GP or to a member of the Charterhouse Clinic team (0808 123 0222). You can use a simple unit calculator to assess whether the amount you drink might be damaging to your health.
Get help to stop drinking alcohol
If you’ve decided to stop drinking, it’s essential that you get help. It’s much more difficult to stop drinking on your own. If you are dependent on alcohol, you may experience withdrawal symptoms when you stop drinking. These symptoms include the following:
- Anxiety after waking
- Sweating and tremors
- Nausea or retching in the morning
- Seizures or fits
These symptoms can be dangerous, or even fatal. If you are trying to detox from alcohol, you should be medically supervised.
Tell your friends and family that you plan to stop drinking alcohol
One of the best things you can do is tell your friends and family that you plan to quit drinking (and why). That way, your friends and family can support you if needed. They won’t mind if you have to avoid meeting them for a drink and they won’t offer you a drink when you see them — situations which can always put those fighting alcohol addiction under extreme pressure.
Avoid the temptation to drink
In some cases, you might need to think about the people that you spend time with. It’s much harder to quit drinking if you spend time with people who tend to drink or you hang out in places where drink is always available. This can be a very difficult, but true friends will support your decision to stop drinking.
A professional can help you stop drinking
Some people will find it very difficult to stop drinking. In that case, you might need professional support and you might need treatment for alcohol addiction.
There are those who are able to stop drinking alcohol by using CBT. CBT, which stands for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, is a method of treating problematic behaviours which is endorsed by the NHS. The aim of CBT is to empower patients to resolve their own illness by addressing causes of problems and resultant behaviours. CBT is the process of examining thought processes, with the help of a qualified therapist. The intention is to challenge and transform problematic processes.
It’s also possible to get counselling for alcohol addiction. Someone who is addicted to alcohol has wired their brain so that they feel good only when they drink. It’s important that the patient is able to rewire that process so that they can feel good again, without consuming alcohol. This is a long process that often requires counselling.
We also recommend that people try alternative treatments for alcohol addiction. Activities that help you cultivate a healthy mind and body can help people to overcome an addiction. That’s why we recommend yoga, tai chi, active meditation, and a range of other activities.
Can a rehab clinic help you stop drinking?
Rehabilitation clinics are designed to help people stop drinking. You can stay overnight in an alcohol-free environment until you are no longer dependent on alcohol. Throughout your stay, you’ll be supported by trained medical staff who can reduce the dangers of alcohol withdrawal. You’ll also be supported by qualified counsellors, therapists and psychologists.
Get professional help to stop drinking with Charterhouse Clinic. Our confidential telephone lines are free and open 24/7. Call us on 0808 123 0222.