Are there other options out there for alcoholics other than support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous? Do medications work and would they work well alongside support groups?
An organization called Help.org thinks so in their article Alcohol: Rehab & Recovery: Guide to Alcohol Rehab.
Whether attending rehab for a drug addiction, an alcohol addiction, or both, the rehabilitation process is the same. However, medication for alcohol addiction is a component that’s often added to the detox and therapy stages, which are shown below.
For more information, read their guide to the rehab process.
There are two categories or “settings” that rehab facilities fall into inpatient or full-time rehab, and outpatient or part-time rehab. A more in-depth look at the difference is explained by the National Institue on Drug Abuse:
|Setting||Type of Treatment||Description||Time Commitment||Duration|
|Inpatient||Short-term residential||Intensive treatment, sometimes in a hospital setting. Therapies offered are extensive. Medical treatment is available to those who qualify.||Hours per Day: 24||14-30 days|
|Days per Week: 7|
|Long-Term Residential||Intensive treatment in a non-hospital setting, most often a therapeutic community facility with other patients. Therapies offered are extensive. Medical treatment is available to those who qualify.||Hours per Day: 24||3-12 months|
|Days per Week: 7|
|Intensive treatment in a hospital setting. Patients do not stay overnight. Referred to as “inpatient” due to the hospital setting, extensive services provided, and the near full-time commitment every week. Medical treatment is available to those who qualify.||Hours per Day: 6-8||14-30 days|
|Days per Week: 5|
|Outpatient||Intensive Day Treatment||Patients receive the extensive services of an inpatient program but return home after. After completion, patients often transition to less intensive counseling. Therapies offered are extensive. Medical treatment is available to those who qualify.||Hours per Day: 2-4||3-4 months|
|Days per Week: 3|
|Counseling||Both individual counseling and group counseling focus on short-term behavioral goals to develop coping strategies. Therapies offered are moderate. Medical treatment is not available.||Hours per Day: 1-2||As long as desired|
|Days per Week: 1-3|
|Support Groups||Self-help groups are recommended to help maintain abstinence after another form of treatment. Typically meet one day a week for 1-2 hours.|
Assessments for Alcohol Addiction:
The first step for people who recognize they have a drinking problem is to be assessed by a professional. This is usually always the best first step towards recovery. It is important to see a primary care physician for moderate to severe alcohol addiction in order to provide prescriptions and oversee health during recovery:
Contact your family doctor or an addiction professional
Since those with moderate to severe alcohol addiction can benefit from medication that must be prescribed by a medical professional, start with your primary care physician. He or she can start the assessment process, work with an addiction counselor to provide the right prescriptions, and monitor your overall health during the recovery process. Alternatively, you can contact a counselor or rehab facility directly to schedule an assessment and begin the rehabilitation process.
For more information about alcohol addiction, detox and Medications please read more at their guide on Alcohol Addiction.
There are many different paths to recovery and not all paths are exactly the same. To read more about the Addiction Rehabilitation Process, or to find a rehab center near you please visit Help.org and start your journey to recovery today. And, always remember, You are Worth the Effort you put into Your Recovery!