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Alcohol addiction, what is it and how can I treat it?

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Alcohol is one of the most abused substances in England, with only 18% of an estimated 602,391 dependent drinkers receiving treatment. Unfortunately, due to the country’s drinking culture and the fact that alcohol is so easily accessible, alcohol addiction continues to be a serious problem.

Read on for our inside knowledge on alcohol dependency and how to go about treating it.


Why do people drink?

People drink alcohol for many reasons. What may begin as casual drinking can quickly become a problematic habit, and it’s not long until you find yourself in the throes of a full-blown addiction.

Some people enjoy the feeling of being drunk because alcohol helps lower inhibitions and increases confidence in social settings. Others might drink to numb physical and emotional pain. However, self-medicating with alcohol is dangerous, and addiction can develop rapidly.

What are the physical and phycological signs of alcohol addiction?

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You may suspect that a loved one has an addiction to alcohol, or maybe you’re concerned about your drinking habits. Whatever the case may be, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the signs and symptoms of alcohol addiction, as they could potentially save a life.

Symptoms of alcohol addiction can manifest physically, psychologically and behaviourally.

What are the physical signs of alcoholism?

Some of the most common physical symptoms of alcohol addiction include:

  • Excessive sweating without exertion
  • Slurred speech
  • Looking unkempt and neglecting physical appearance and personal hygiene
  • Insomnia
  • Tremors which begin once you stop drinking alcohol
  • Dramatic changes in weight, either extreme weight loss or weight gain due to changes in appetite
  • Frequent migraines and headaches
  • Feeling lethargic
  • Slow reflexes

What are the behavioural signs of alcoholism?

The behavioural symptoms of alcoholism that you should be aware of include:

  • Being dishonest and secretive about drinking habits
  • Drinking to excess/blackout
  • Drinking alone
  • Drinking at inappropriate times such as first thing in the morning
  • Breakdown of friendships and relationships
  • Poor work or school performance
  • Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Neglecting home, work and childcare responsibilities
  • Continuing to drink despite the repercussions

Over time, abusing alcohol can also interfere with the brain’s communication pathways and affect the way it functions. This damage can lead to other mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

If you’re suffering from alcoholism, or you suspect that someone close to you has an addiction to alcohol, get in touch with Which Rehab today. We can talk you through the next stages and organise treatment for you immediately.

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How is alcohol addiction treated?

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The good news is that with the correct care, you can overcome alcohol addiction. While some physical side effects of alcohol addiction are irreversible, it’s still possible to live a life free from alcoholism and prevent your current condition from worsening.

Speak to your GP

The first step to getting help is to speak to your GP. They can advise you on treatment options and refer you to your nearest drug and alcohol service. While it can be daunting speaking to your doctor about alcohol addiction, it’s important to remember that anything you say remains private and confidential. Being open and honest about your problem will allow them to help you get the appropriate care.

Private rehab

Alcohol addiction is most effectively treated in a private alcohol rehab.

If you’ve been abusing alcohol for a long time, you are likely to experience extremely unpleasant withdrawal symptoms, some of which can be dangerous if not supervised by a medical professional. A combination of detox medication and intensive psychological therapy gives you the best chance of overcoming alcohol addiction.

Talk to us today for free addiction advice. Our experienced team can get you to the most appropriate alcohol rehab centre for your situation.

Call free on 0800 170 7000.

If private residential rehab isn’t an option for you, there are plenty of alternative options available to help you overcome alcohol addiction.

Free addiction services

Most local drug and alcohol services provide a medically supervised alcohol detox. Once you are registered with your local service, you will be prescribed the appropriate medication to help with any alcohol withdrawal symptoms you may experience. You will also be assigned a key worker who will meet with you every week to assess your progress and offer you counselling.

Mutual Aid

Mutual aid meetings are a community approach to therapeutic support. The most common mutual aid groups in the UK include 12-Step meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous and alternative meetings like SMART Recovery. While these groups don’t provide detox or medical advice, they can offer great support in early recovery.

Addiction counselling

Dealing with the psychological aspects of addiction is key if you hope to recover. Counselling for alcohol addiction is designed to help you understand what’s caused or contributed to your addiction. Counselling is provided by some free drug and alcohol services; however, you can also choose to go private.

Get help for alcohol addiction in London

Which Rehab is dedicated to helping anyone suffering from alcohol addiction, find the best treatment. Whether you’re looking for a private alcohol rehab in London, or need advice on alcohol counselling, our team will take the time to better understand your situation and talk you through your options.

We understand that reaching out and asking for help can feel daunting. Our team will make sure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about alcohol addiction treatment and are happy to answer any questions you might have.

Get in touch today and begin your journey to recovery.