Treatment for alcohol addiction at home

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Call our local number 01603 513 091
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Are you motivated to quit alcohol or cut down to sound health levels?

When you are an alcohol addict, there comes a point when you want to stop. You feel sick of waking up tired and hungover, blacking out, and having no clue what happened last night.

You’re done with disappointing your close ones over and over again.

You are having serious health issues and you want to stop drinking forever. That recognition is the primary step toward seeking treatment and recovery.

But how can you treat alcohol dependence at home?

Alcoholism has a great impact on the people struggling with it, their family, and friends as well. Treating alcohol safely may look like the only solution to cope with alcoholism.

Still, it’s important to remember that addiction treatment can be dangerous if done at home.

Alcohol detoxification at a professional rehabilitation facility is usually the most suggested method for alcoholism treatment. Abstinence from alcohol is challenging and not everybody can achieve it on their own.

That is the reason why alcohol detox is administered by licensed medical professionals or other qualified healthcare providers.

Alcoholism Treatment at Home

Many people think of treating alcohol addiction at home. There’s generally no place with safe-feeling, comfortable, and controllable than an individual’s home.

Still, treating alcohol abuse at home can have dangers when people don’t understand the detachment timeline and the challenges that come with this alcohol disorder treatment.

The challenges of treating alcohol abuse at home

There are severe, potentially dangerous challenges involved with alcohol addiction treatment – particularly when you are dealing with it on your own.

When you suddenly stop drinking alcohol, the body reacts with a series of triggers, cravings, and withdrawal symptoms.

These symptoms are horrible, extremely hard to manage, and may endure for weeks.

Without any medication and professional assistance, the process is trickier and tougher.

If a person stops consuming alcohol suddenly, it can lead to seizures, hallucinations, and even heart failure that may cause death.

While this is rare, you never know how actually your body will react to the alcohol cessation until you experience it.

Furthermore, if an alcohol addict was consuming other substances like cocaine, prescription medications, heroin – alcohol withdrawal symptoms may be unpredictable or worsened.

For some people, the pain is unbearable and so severe that they revert to drinking again.

It finishes being a cycle of trying to give up but not being able to because of the severe symptoms to treat addiction.

When an addict joins an inpatient alcohol treatment program, the professionals remove the home from the surroundings and bad habits.

People struggling with alcohol dependence are fighting against other medical conditions like anxiety, depression, or personality disorders.

People usually use alcohol as self-medication but after cessation, these disorders get worsen. Some people don’t recognize that they’re coping with mental health disorders until they leave drinking.

Benefits and side effects of alcoholism treatment at home

Here are some of the prominent perks of alcohol detox at home.

1. Cheap treatment – detoxification at home is way cheaper than a quasi-residential or full rehabilitation program. Most of the addicts can’t afford the funding needed for residential programmes.

2. Speedy recovery – a home base treatment is normally possible within 2 days after you call the healthcare provider. A healthcare expert travels to you and finds out your suitability to start the detox process. He prescribes medications that you can use while experiencing severe withdrawal symptoms of alcohol dependence.

3. 24x7 support by your family – a lot of residential rehabs don’t allow families to stay with patients. But at home, you can not only work on recovery, but you always get support from your loved ones.

4. No need to share your space – when you are in a rehab centre you connect with patients, support groups, and staff which some people don’t like for they miss their privacy. In a home-based treatment, you obviously don’t have to do that.

Alcohol detox can be a hazardous process, that’s the reason why it’s usually best handled by medical professionals at rehab centres.

Alcohol addiction treatment includes abstinence and abstinence involves triggers and other physical symptoms which can be severe.

The severity of body reactions depends upon plenteous factors including gender, age, and duration of addiction.

Do it yourself alcohol rehab

Getting over an alcohol use disorder can be a long, tiring, and bumpy road. Sometimes it feels next to impossible.

But, if you are devoted and committed to quit drinking and willing to get assistance, you can recover from alcohol abuse – depending of how heavy drinker you are or how miserable you feel. If in doubt, consider a professional, private alcohol rehab to get the help that you deserve. 

And you don’t have to wait until you reach the peak of addiction, you can take steps to manage your drinking habits.

Measure the costs and perks of drinking

Make a chart weighing the money you spend on drinking and then add the perks of quitting.

Perks of drinking

  • Fun
  • No remembrance of problems and worries
  • Best way to unwind and relax after an exhausting day

Perks of not drinking

  • Better mental and physical health
  • Good & healthy relationships
  • More time and energy for activities and people

What value alcohol is adding?

  • Problems in relationships
  • Feelings of embarrassment, anxiousness, and depression
  • Bad impact on family responsibilities and job performance

Life after quitting alcohol

  • Mindful approach towards life and its challenges
  • No bad company (alcohol addicts)
  • Face responsibilities and mend the broken relationships

Be focused

If an addict wants to reduce alcohol consumption, segregate the days for drinking alcohol and not drinking alcohol. Try to commit 2-3 days every week when you will not drink alcohol at all.

And after setting the goals make a chart with a set of rules as a treatment plan to accomplish the goals and relapse prevention. 

For instance: 

  • Avoid temptations: Take out all alcohol-related paraphernalia and barware from your home or office. 
  • Talk about your goals to your friends: let your family members, friends, and co-workers know that you are aiming to cut back or stop drinking. If they drink, ask for their assistance and support by not drinking in front of you. 
  • Be strict about the rules: make it clear that no alcohol consumption is allowed in the home, and you won’t go to the events where alcohol will be served. 
  • Learn from your mistakes: recall the past and your mistakes to reduce or stop your drinking. Use alternatives to utilize your time in a productive way. 
  • Leave bad company: distance yourself from people who don’t support you in your decision. This may cause breaking up with certain friends and leaving social circles.  
treatment for alcohol addiction at home

How to self rehab from alcohol 

Alcohol withdrawal during self-rehab is no walk in the park. Although everyone will have their own withdrawal symptoms, triggers, and coping mechanism, the detox process involves some very uncomfortable and draining physical and psychological symptoms when you stop drinking. 

Particularly, if you are treating alcohol intoxication at home without taking assistance from a qualified healthcare provider. 

Some strong alcohol withdrawal symptoms are: 

  • Excessive sweating 
  • Vomiting and nausea 
  • Fever 
  • Headache 
  • Tremors or shaking 
  • Irritability 
  • Mood swings 
  • Fatigue 
  • Depression/anxiety 
  • Seizures 
  • Delirium or hallucinations 
  • Difficulty in making decisions and thinking 
  • Hypertension or increased heart rate 

Alcohol cravings normally start within few hours of alcohol cessation, top out in 1-2 days and get better within 5-6 days.

But in people with severe alcohol problems, the withdrawal is not only unpleasant– it can be potentially fatal and can cause medical complications.

If the patient is a heavy drinker, medically supervised alcohol detox by a primary care doctor or a healthcare professional is a must to seek treatment.  

Inpatient and outpatient alcohol intoxication in a rehab centre, in a medical treatment facility, or in a hospital can be availed where the people with alcohol problems are treated by health professionals with addiction medicine to relieve withdrawal symptoms and avoid more severe symptoms.  

Note: You should seek professional medical advice if you experience any of these severe symptoms during alcohol treatment:  

  • Fever 
  • Severe vomiting 
  • Convulsions or seizures 
  • Disorientation or confusion (mental health disorder) 
  • Extreme agitation 
  • Hallucination (mental health disorder) 

These symptoms can cause mental health issues and life-threatening changes in the neural system of your brain responsible for regulating breathing and circulation, so it’s crucial to get medical help immediately.  

Get help & support! 

It doesn’t matter if you are overcoming addiction by using prescribed medication, getting therapy, going to rehab for professional treatment, or taking a self-directed approach like at-home detox, help is mandatory.  

Recovering from alcohol use disorder is much comfortable when you have people around you who you can rely on for guidance, comfort, and motivation to stop drinking. Support can come from friends, family members, therapists, health professionals, counsellors, a treatment provider, recovering alcoholics, and people with the same beliefs as yours. 

Rely on family and friends

Support from your friends and family is a priceless asset when you have a drinking problem.

If you are hesitant to going back to your family and dear ones because you disappointed them before, think of going to family therapy or couples counselling for professional medical advice. 

Be around decent people

If your previous social circle includes addicts, you should make some new connections. You must surround yourself with sober friends who want you to live a healthier life and support your recovery.

Join a civic group or a church, start taking a class, attend social events or you can volunteer for them. 

Don’t miss any meetings 

Join alcohol addiction treatment programs, advanced recovery systems, and support groups like alcoholics anonymous, to improve your behavioural health conditions, and don’t miss a single meeting.

Spend time with people who understand what exactly you’ve been through can be relieving. You can listen to the stories of people who were heavy drinkers and triumphed over their weaknesses. 

Reset your life 

Although getting over substance abuse and alcohol use disorder is the most important step in the initial stages of your treatment, but it’s just the beginning.

You can get started on the road of quitting alcoholic drinks with the help of a health care provider or joining support groups, but to stay consistent and alcohol-free for longer, you should reset your life and add new meaning and purpose to it where drinking has no place. 

Natural remedies to detox at home 

1.      Stay healthy 

To get rid of mood swings and cope with alcohol cravings, focus on getting plenty of sleep and adopting healthy eating habits. Exercise is also important: It relieves stress, releases endorphins, and improves emotional state and mental well-being. 

2.      Establish your support network 

Be with those who have a positive attitude towards life and who make you happy and feel good. The more you are engaged with your community and other people the more your attention will be diverted – which will be helpful in staying encouraged and on the right track of treatment success. 

3.      Develop new interests and activities 

Volunteer events and activities, adopt new hobbies or join work that gives your life meaning and purpose. When you do productive things, you’ll feel better about yourself, and you’ll start considering drinking an unhealthy activity. 

4.      Manage stress in a productive way 

Alcohol consumption is usually misled way to relieve stress. Find productive ways to keep your anxiety level in checks like mediation, exercise, or taking part in breathing exercises or other stress-relieving techniques. 

5.      Continue treatment 

The chances of maintaining abstinence improve if an alcoholic participates in a support group like alcoholics anonymous or is involved in an outpatient treatment program/ therapy. 

How to treat alcohol addiction at home 

While treating alcohol abuse at home, use these strategies: 

Speak to a close friend - it can be a supportive family member, your sponsor, someone from your community, or a close friend. 

Divert your attention until the alcohol craving stops - do exercise, listen to music, run an errand, or help somebody.  

Keep reminding yourself of the pros of quitting drinking - when you get triggered for alcohol withdrawal, try to remind yourself of the perks of quitting drinking. Think how happy your family would be, you’ll be in a better position and how your friends would feel. 

Accept the urge and deal with it battling an urge is not a good choice. Think of it as a wave that you must surf with courage. Without trying to battle, ignore or judge, accept it calmly and get yourself busy and admit that you are doing it as a treatment. 

Managing the setbacks in your addiction treatment 

Alcohol recovery is a complete process – that usually includes setbacks. Don’t stop/quit if you slip or relapse during detox at home.

A drinking slip doesn’t mean you can’t maintain relapse prevention, or you’ll never live an alcohol-free life.

Each drinking relapse is a chance to learn and retry to achieve sobriety, so you’ll be less probable to relapse in the future. 

How to handle the withdrawal symptoms? 

  • Leave that glass and get away from the setting where you slipped 
  • Tell yourself that one relapse doesn’t mean a full-blown relapse 
  • Don’t allow any guilt or embarrassment to keep you from getting back on track 
  • Call a close friend, a supportive family member, a sponsor, a health professional, or a counsellor immediately 

Can an alcoholic be sectioned?

In the UK, forcing someone into rehab is prohibited. An alcohol addict must enter a rehab programme of their own free will, and they are free to leave whenever to choose. There is only one exception to when an alcoholic can be sectioned. According to the mental health act, an alcoholic can be forced into rehab if deemed dangerous to themselves or others. 

Except if an addict genuinely wishes to stop drinking, forcing them to attend a rehab programme will most likely yield no positive result. 

Getting someone into alcohol rehab 

Watching your loved ones destroy themself with alcohol abuse is heartbreaking. Yet, confronting them about their addiction may cause more harm if you go about it the wrong way. That is why you need to learn the challenges involved in getting someone into alcohol rehab before attempting. 

As a rule of thumb, you need to employ the help of a professional interventionist to help an alcoholic overcome denial. Ensure that the intervention is staged in a neutral location, not the addicts home, and after they have had their first drink. 

Why rehab doesn't work

Drug or alcohol recovery may fail if the program is unsuitable or the inpatient lacks adequate support during recovery. 

Forcing someone into recovery is another reason why rehab doesn’t work. Except an addict enters rehab willingly, addiction treatment may be ineffective. 

Recovering from addiction takes time, and research shows that 67 per cent of people who stay in rehab for 27 weeks remain sober, compared to only 34% of those who did not. Therefore, the duration of the recovery program can determine its effectiveness. [1]

How to help an alcohol addict? 

Alcohol-related problems affect the whole family and the addict’s relationships. Watching a family member or dear one struggling with addiction or substance abuse can be heart-breaking.

But you can help and support the person in relapse prevention and long-term recovery by doing the following things: 

  1. Speak to that individual in a polite way and share your concerns. Offer them help and encourage them for quitting drinking. Don’t lecture, threaten, or argue. 
  2. Learn about the alcohol addiction treatment and talk to them. Discuss the available treatment options. 
  3. Arrange friends and family meetings and offer support to that person in every stage of the recovery journey. 
  4. Get treatment referrals and talk to a qualified admissions representative about the advanced recovery systems and treatment options for alcohol withdrawal. 

Final Thoughts 

If you are addicted to drug abuse or alcohol, it’s crucial you pass the addiction treatment milestone.

To get yourself free from the reign of alcohol addiction and achieve sobriety, you must purge your body of all harmful, toxic substances. This is the only goal of alcohol addiction treatment at home.  

About the author

Peter Szczepanski

Peter has been on the GPhC register for 29 years. He holds a Clinical Diploma in Advanced Clinical Practice and he is a Clinical Lead in Alcohol and Substance Misuse for Abbeycare Gloucester and works as the Clinical Lead in Alcohol and Substance Use in Worcestershire. Find Peter on Respiratory Academy, Aston University graduates, University of Birmingham, Q, Pharmaceutical Journal, the Dudley Pharmaceutical Committee, Dudley Council, Twitter, and LinkedIn.