Alcoholism Treatment Options

Alcoholism Treatment Options



Alcoholism Treatment Options
Medications
The classical use of​ medications for​ alcoholism is​ to encourage abstinence. ​
Antabuse also known as​ disulfiram, for​ instance, prevents the​ elimination of​ chemicals which cause severe discomfort when ​alcohol​ is​ ingested, effectively preventing the​ alcoholic from drinking in significant amounts while they take the​ medicine. ​
Heavy drinking while on antabuse can result in severe illness and​ ​ death.
Naltrexone has also been used because it​ helps curb cravings for​ ​alcohol​ while the​ person is​ on it. ​
Both of​ these, however, have been demonstrated to cause a​ rebound effect when the​ user stops taking them. ​
These do allow a​ person to overcome psychological addictions to alcohol, but they do not treat the​ neurochemical addiction.
In more recent studies it​ has been demonstrated that the​ use of​ naltrexone while the​ alcoholic continues to drink can result in extinction of​ the​ neurochemical addiction. ​
Referred to as​ the​ Sinclair Method, this technique is​ used with good results some US states and​ ​ in Finland but has failed to penetrate much of​ the​ world because of​ the​ longstanding bias against any treatment that doesnt involve detoxification and​ ​ abstinence. ​

Rationing
Rationing or​ other attempts to control use are increasingly ineffective as​ pathological attachment to the​ ​Drug​ develops. ​
Use often continues despite serious adverse health, personal, legal, workrelated, and​ ​ financial consequences. ​

Detoxification
Detoxification programs run by medical institutions often involve stays for​ a​ number of​ weeks in specialized hospital wards, where ​Drug​s may be used to avoid withdrawal symptoms. ​
In severe cases, detoxification may lead to death. ​
To that point, even a​ simple detox can involve seizures, if​ ​ not properly monitored.
Post Detox Therapy
After detoxification, various forms of​ group therapy or​ psychotherapy are recommended to deal with underlying psychological issues leading to ​alcohol​ dependence. ​
it​ is​ also used to provide the​ recovering addict with relapse prevention skills. ​

Aversion therapies may be supported by ​Drug​s like Disulfiram, which causes a​ strong and​ ​ prompt sensitivity reaction whenever ​alcohol​ is​ consumed. ​
Naltrexone or​ Acamprosate may improve compliance with abstinence planning by treating the​ physical aspects of​ cravings to drink. ​
The standard pharmocopoeia of​ antidepressants, anxiolytics, and​ ​ other psychotropic ​Drug​s treat underlying mood disorders, neuroses, and​ ​ psychoses associated with alcoholic symptoms.
Group Counseling
In the​ mid1930s, the​ mutualhelp groupcounseling approach to treatment began and​ ​ has become very popular. ​
Alcoholics Anonymous is​ the​ bestknown example of​ this movement. ​
Various branches are available for​ family members of​ the​ alcoholic or​ commonly referred to as​ the​ codependents. ​
Other groups include LifeRing Secular Recovery and​ ​ SMART Recovery.
Prevention
Some programs attempt to help problem drinkers before they become dependents. ​
These programs focus on harmreduction and​ ​ reducing ​alcohol​ intake as​ opposed to coldturkey approaches. ​
One such program is​ called Moderation Management.
Nutritional therapy
Another treatment program is​ based on nutritional therapy. ​
Many ​alcohol​ dependents have insulin resistance syndrome, a​ metabolic disorder where the​ bodys difficulty in processing sugars causes an unsteady supply to the​ blood stream. ​
While the​ disorder can be treated by a​ hypoglycemic diet, this can affect behavior and​ ​ emotions, sideeffects often seen among ​alcohol​ dependents in treatment. ​
The metabolic aspects of​ such dependence are often overlooked, resulting in poor results.
Return to normal drinking
Although it​ has long been argued that alcoholic dependents cannot learn to drink in moderation, research by the​ U.S. ​
National Institute on ​alcohol​ Abuse and​ ​ Alcoholism NIAAA indicates a​ small percentage of​ individuals in the​ US whose dependence began more than one year earlier are now drinking in moderation. ​
In contrast, a​ high percentage who undergo naltrexone usereduction therapy are capable of​ normal drinking habits. ​
Use of​ Naltrexone involves taking the​ medication an hour before any drinking occurs in order to maintain this.
Societal Impact
Today, ​alcohol​ abuse and​ ​ ​alcohol​ dependence are major public health problems in North America, costing the​ regions inhabitants, by some estimates, as​ much as​ US$170 billion annually. ​
​alcohol​ abuse and​ ​ ​alcohol​ dependence sometimes cause death, particularly through liver, pancreatic, or​ kidney disease, internal bleeding, brain deterioration, ​alcohol​ poisoning, and​ ​ suicide. ​
Heavy ​alcohol​ consumption by a​ pregnant mother can also lead to fetal ​alcohol​ syndrome, an incurable and​ ​ damaging condition.
Additionally, ​alcohol​ abuse and​ ​ dependence are major contributing factors for​ head injuries, motor vehicle accidents, violence and​ ​ assaults, neurological, and​ ​ other medical problems.
​alcohol​ addiction is​ a​ treatable disease. ​
if ​ you are an alcoholic or​ are a​ family member of​ an alcoholic, contact your physician for​ the​ most current treatments available.




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