Recent statistics show that more than half of the people in the U.S. struggle with alcohol use. Excessive alcohol use is a problem for many individuals in the United States and a large number have questions about alcoholism and alcohol detoxification. Making the decision to get help for your alcohol use is difficult, but there is hope.
Traditional views, such as those of 12 step programs, share the false believe that alcohol use is a brain disease â€“ that there is an alcoholism gene that is inherited and that you are powerless over your alcohol use. The truth is that in spite of extensive research, no alcoholic gene has been discovered. You did not inherit the desire to use alcohol. You may have learned to use alcohol from your parents or others around you, but it is a behavior and not a genetic defect. While the brain may change from alcohol use, the fact is that the brain can be remapped, and can relearn behavior that does not involve the use of alcohol.
12 step programs and traditional detox programs tell you that you will never be able to control your alcohol use and that you will need treatment for the rest of your life. The truth is that you can achieve sobriety without the need for lifelong detox, treatment and counseling.
The first step in taking back control of your life from alcohol use may include detox. Not everyone needs medical alcohol detox; it will depend on the amount of alcohol you use and how long you have been using. You should consult with a doctor regarding your concerns about alcoholism and alcohol detoxification, to see if you need alcohol detox.
Alcohol detoxification is the removal of the toxic chemicals that have accumulated in your body from your alcohol use. For some patients the process can be painful as they go through withdrawal symptoms when they stop using alcohol. Withdrawal may include psychological and physical symptoms such as anxiety, irritability, nausea, vomiting, sweats, headaches and tremors. Some individuals also experience the DTs which are periods of confusion, extreme agitation and hallucinations.
If you need alcohol detox, you have several options including nonmedical detox and medical detox. Yoga, acupuncture, meditation therapy and vitamin therapy are all examples of non-medical detox and they may see individuals on an inpatient or outpatient basis. This is not recommended for people who have developed a severe alcohol dependency.
Medical detox may also take place on an inpatient or outpatient basis. Doctors may prescribe medication for individuals to take with them so that they may detox at home, or individuals may choose to visit clinics. Traditional hospital detox has been counted by some as ineffective because of the type of oral medication used and the questionable practices exercised. Alcohol detox patients in traditional detox programs are housed in psychiatric wards, restricted from outside contact and on lockdown status. Additionally, most traditional detox programs follow the false "alcohol is a disease" model, taking away any chance of success from the patient.
Doctors agree that IV therapy medical detox is the best method of detox available to alcohol users. The physician supervised, IV therapy medical detox, makes it possible for the physician to change the medication to meet the needs of the patient, ensuring that the patient is comfortable and the detox is completed.
You may find it necessary to enroll in a program to help you rebuild your life. Freedom Model Retreats offers an educational cognitive behavioral program that can help you to achieve lasting lifestyle changes.