Alcohol Addiction Treatment

Alcohol Addiction Treatment In South Carolina

Alcohol has been a staple in American culture for as long as American history itself. While this drink comes in many different variations, every type of alcohol acts as a depressant drug. Alcohol slows down the body’s systems, which makes individuals feel more relaxed.

Consuming alcohol is legal and those who drink are usually met with zero judgment. Despite this, a national survey found that 14.1 million Americans ages 18 and older suffered from an alcohol use disorder in 2019. To put that into perspective, that’s almost 6% of American adults.

Those with an alcohol use disorder may find it difficult to admit that they have a drinking problem. It may be even harder to resist the temptation of drinking when going to bars and parties revolve around alcohol. Individuals who find that alcohol has taken over their life need to seek alcohol addiction treatment as it can lead to serious mental and physical repercussions.

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What Is An Alcohol Addiction?

According to the American Psychiatric Association, an alcohol use disorder is a complex medical condition where individuals are compelled to use alcohol despite the harmful consequences. Individuals suffering from an alcohol use disorder likely want to stop drinking, but can’t even if they try. Alcoholism has a severe impact not just on the person suffering from addiction, but also on the people around them like relatives, friends, and family.

Individuals who regularly consume alcohol will also build up a tolerance and require a lot more to reach the level of intoxication that they used to accomplish with much less alcohol. This tolerance will become a lot more obvious once the person begins to lose interest in all things that used to be important in their life. The more they drink, the more they become psychologically and physically dependent upon drinking alcohol.

A major symptom of alcohol dependency is the rate of recurrence of alcohol or the incapability to pass a day without consuming an alcoholic beverage. An alcohol-dependent person is typically not able to control the amount of alcohol he or she consumes. Due to the physical addiction a person develops to alcohol, most people who abuse it are more than willing to go to extremes to get their next drink to avoid physical withdrawals.

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Symptoms of Alcohol Withdrawal

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Those addicted to alcohol typically experience symptoms of withdrawal anywhere from two to 12 hours after their last drink. Alcohol withdrawal symptoms peak in a 2-day to 3-day window and may persist for weeks. These symptoms often worsen over time, so those experiencing even mild withdrawal symptoms should seek out professional help.

Early stages of alcohol withdrawal symptoms can range from:

  • Shakiness
  • Sweating
  • Anxiety
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia

The peak stage of alcohol withdrawal symptoms may include:

  • Clammy skin
  • Confusion
  • Nightmares
  • Mood swings
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Severe anxiety
  • Seizures
  • Alcohol hallucinations

Those with increased risk for severe withdrawal symptoms may experience visual, auditory, and tactile hallucinations, although they rarely last for more than two days. One of the most severe symptoms and risks of alcohol withdrawal is delirium tremens (DT). Sufferers of DT may experience sweating, confusion and disorientation, rapid or irregular heartbeat, fever, severe anxiety, and alcohol hallucinations indistinguishable from reality. DT can be fatal and should be immediately treated by medical professionals.

As with other addictive substances, withdrawal symptoms can vary in length and intensity based on a variety of factors. Acute medical illness, psychiatric illness, abnormal liver function, old age, and multiple previous detoxifications can all increase the likelihood of intense symptoms of withdrawal.

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Whether you are looking for help for yourself or a loved one, know that help is just one step away.

Call us at (843) 669-6088

Treating Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol addiction can be difficult to beat alone. Not only is it difficult, but it can also be dangerous. After a medically supervised detox, those suffering from an alcohol use disorder should consider what type of treatment would best suit them.

There are two main types of care which are inpatient and outpatient treatment. Inpatient care requires patients to stay at an addiction recovery center throughout the course of treatment. Outpatient care often has similar treatment programs, but patients aren’t required to live at the facility. The Owl’s Nest offers evidence-based outpatient treatment programs that can help individuals overcome addiction without needing to attend an inpatient program.

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The Owls Nest offers the following outpatient programs:

  • Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) – The most intense form of outpatient care, which requires five days of treatment, at least eight hours per week.
  • Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) – A good transition from PHPs, IOPs require patients to dedicate three to five days of their time to treatment.
  • General outpatient programs (OPs) – The least intense form of outpatient care. Only requires a few hours a week of treatment.

Each outpatient program will include various types of therapies and life skill workshops to help individuals hold themselves accountable for their actions, but also show them how to forgive themselves. A main component of treatment for alcohol addiction is the 12-Step program by Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Patients can find strength through a higher power and through their sponsors, who will help them stay committed to long-term sobriety.

The 12 Steps

  1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol, that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. We came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
  4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. We admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
  8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Signs of Alcohol Overdose

Alcohol overdose, commonly known as alcohol poisoning, occurs when an individual consumes too much alcohol, overwhelming the body’s ability to break down the alcohol and clear it from the bloodstream. As a result, blood alcohol content (BAC) rises and the brain can begin shutting down.

Early signs of an alcohol overdose may include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Clouded judgment
  • Decreased coordination

As BAC rises, it can significantly impair speech, memory, coordination, attention, reaction time, and balance. Individuals suffering from an alcohol overdose may experience confusion or blackouts. Even after an individual passes out or loses consciousness, BAC can continue to rise as alcohol is released into the bloodstream from the stomach and intestines. At a certain point, the brain can begin to shut down.

Look out for signs of low or irregular breathing (fewer than 8 breaths per minute/10 or more seconds between breaths). Dehydration, seizures, and hypothermia are all symptoms of alcohol poisoning. Hypothermia symptoms include a low body temperature and pale or bluish skin. Alcohol overdose can cause a coma, brain damage, or death.

Recovering From a DUI or DWI

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), about 28 fatalities occur every day due to drunk driving. While these numbers were lower in 2019 than they had been in decades, more than 10,000 people died that year. Being arrested for DUI can result in huge fines, jail time, probation, and a revoked driver’s license.

Driving a motor vehicle while impaired is usually the symptom of a larger problem: addiction. People who were caught driving under the influence may feel upset that they ended up with a DUI. However, they should see this as a wake-up call to take back their lives from the clutches of alcohol addiction. Instead of getting upset, it’s important to seek treatment immediately to never end up in a similar situation.

The Owl’s Nest Can Help You Break Free From Alcohol Addiction

The treatment programs offered at The Owl’s Nest empower residents to live a life free of alcohol addiction. Thousands of alumni are proof that this program works. If you or someone you know is struggling with alcoholism, please contact us today.