Alcohol addiction is a serious medical illness that affects all aspects of your life. Fort Myers alcohol abuse programs help you end your alcohol abuse for good.
Alcoholics Anonymous is known to help individuals recover from an addiction, but it’s best used as part of a comprehensive rehab program. Programs for alcoholics other than AA offer a variety of pathways to recovery that may or may not include 12-step programming. High quality Fort Myers alcohol abuse programs should take a holistic approach to treatment that addresses issues of body, mind, and spirit for whole-person healing.
Alcohol Abuse, Addiction, and Dependence
Before you can understand how Fort Myers alcohol abuse programs work, it’s important to understand alcohol abuse, addiction, and dependence.
Alcohol abuse is the act of using alcohol in unhealthy or unsafe ways or in ways that cause problems in your life. People abuse alcohol for a variety of reasons, including to:
- Cope with symptoms of depression, anxiety, or other mental illnesses.
- Cope with chronic stress.
- Cope with the negative emotions resulting from a past trauma.
Alcohol abuse can lead to addiction. Whether or not it does depends on a number of factors, including genetics and biological, environmental, and cultural factors. Alcohol addiction is characterized by compulsive alcohol abuse despite the myriad problems it causes for you. Addiction is the result of changes in the physical structures and chemical functions of the brain, which affect the way you think and behave.
Dependence is a physical reliance on alcohol, characterized by withdrawal symptoms that set in when you stop using alcohol. Dependence is also the result of changes in the brain, which occur as the brain attempts to compensate for the presence of alcohol. At some point, brain function may shift so that it operates more comfortably on alcohol than when alcohol is withheld. When you stop using, normal brain function rebounds and causes withdrawal symptoms, which can be excruciating. In some cases, withdrawal can be dangerous or even, in some rare cases, fatal.
How Fort Myers Alcohol Abuse Programs Help
If you’ve become dependent on alcohol, the first step of alcohol treatment is medical detox. During medical detox, alcohol is withheld so that all traces of it can leave your body and your brain function can return to normal. Medical detox is supervised by medical and mental health professionals who administer medications as needed to reduce the severity of withdrawal symptoms and prevent the onset of dangerous symptoms like seizures and increased blood pressure.
Detox only addresses the physical dependence on alcohol. Once detox is complete, the focus of Fort Myers alcohol abuse programs turns to addressing the addiction, which is far more complex than dependence. Treating an addiction is a complicated endeavor that requires:
- Identifying self-destructive thought and behavior patterns and re-learning healthy ways of thinking and behaving.
- Developing essential coping skills to address triggers like stress and cravings.
- Addressing underlying issues behind the alcohol abuse, which commonly include a history of trauma, a co-occurring mental illness, or chronic stress.
- Addressing other needs, such as the need for legal or educational assistance, medical or mental health care, or vocational training.
High-quality Fort Myers alcohol abuse programs also work to help you find purpose and meaning in life without alcohol, learn to have fun and relax without alcohol, and identify an ideal future–and set goals to get you there.
Looking for “Alcohol Programs Near Me”?
Many people who search online for “alcohol programs near me” find more out-of-state programs than programs that are actually near them. If you live in a smaller community, it can be difficult to find nearby programs for alcoholics other than AA. Traveling across the state or out of state is sometimes necessary in order to get the high quality of treatment you need. But the good news is that research shows that attending rehab away from home has several benefits, including a higher level of privacy and the ability to leave old problems and destructive relationships behind while you’re in treatment.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.