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Alcohol Treatment Programs

Alcohol treatment programs are important in dependency recovery. Picking the right program, though can be quite a task. Treatment run the gamut from the medical model to holistic (and homeopathic) approaches. We've written about some of the more popular programs as a starting point for researching something that is right for you or a loved one.

Alcohol Treatment Programs
Alcohol Treatment Center

Medical Model

For treatment that uses the medical model, several kinds of medications can be used in order to treat the withdrawal symptoms from alcohol. Benzodiazepines (Valium®, Librium®) are sometimes used during the first days after a person stops drinking to help him or her safely withdraw from alcohol. Because these two medications are highly addictive, they are not used beyond the first few days of treatment.

Other medications such as naltrexone (ReVia™) are used to help a person maintain sobriety. A medication called disulfiram (Antabuse®), discourages drinking by making the person feel sick if he or she drinks alcohol.


Psychological Model

While medications may help the physical aspects of alcohol withdrawal and abstinence, alcohol counseling (therapy) is needed for most in order to deal with the underlying issues that have led to alcohol dependency in the first place. Exploring the cravings for alcohol and what they mean on a psychological and emotional level is imperative for long-lasting abstinence.

Figuring out lifestyle-change strategies and working through the fear and grief associated with making changes in belief systems and behavioral changes need to be facilitated with a professional therapist. Combining the medical and psychological models is a formula that has worked for many.

Spiritual Model

Alcoholics Anonymous is perhaps the most popular of the spiritual alcohol treatment program models. Based on a 12-step spiritual model of recovery, the first step states, "We admitted we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable." The second step states, "Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." It is the belief that a belief in a "Higher Power" in necessary for recovery which attracts many (and deters some) into this spiritual model.

Christian programs have also sprung up, for those who wish to be in recovery with others in the Christian faith. Generally, both the 12-steps and the Bible are used as texts to aid those in the recovery process.

Alternatives to 12-Step alcoholism treatment can also be specific spiritual models like the Christian recovery model or serve as secular alternatives to spiritual models. Some of the more popular alternative models include Smart Recovery, Rational Recovery, LifeRing Secular Recovery, Secular Organization for Recovery (SOS), and the Lenaire Technique.

Holistic Model

Holistic treatment can combine the traditional medical, psychological and spiritual models with non-traditional approaches integrated a model tailor-fit to the individual. Many times not only the individuals are treated but the families as well. Some holistic programs may be specifically geared towards the treatment of women or adolescents. Some of the non-traditional methods may include sauna detoxification, life skills training, meditation, yoga, fasting, vitamin therapy, biofeedback, journaling, guided imagery and Reiki to name a few.

No matter what, it is important that you find the right alcohol treatment program that works for you or your loved one. Not one size fits all. Not even celebrities are protected from entering treatment as Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter found out. Carter was sentenced to 3-months in an alcohol treatment program after pleading guilty to a drunk driving charge in an Orange County, California Superior Court. The stigma for entering an alcohol treatment program is not what it used to be. People from all walks of life are entering programs to deal with their dependency issues. What are you waiting for?


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

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