Alcoholism is an issue that affects not only American society but cultures around the world. Alcoholism doesn’t discriminate by gender or race, and the legal drug can harm anyone. One of the primary issues pertaining to alcohol is its legality and easy access. For someone whp may be overcome with cravings, all they have to do is turn on the radio, TV, or walk outside and get bombarded with advertisements. It’s not easy to stop drinking with all of the reminders.
Alcohol is the third leading cause of preventable death in the United States. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), 85.6 percent of people age 18 or older admitted to drinking alcohol at some point in their life. Although it’s natural for young adults to experiment, some of them may be predisposed to alcoholism through their genetics. A majority won’t ever experience issues, but others may need alcohol counseling at some point to stop.
Alcohol counseling is an essential and valuable piece of treating alcohol use disorder (AUD). Counselors will offer you guidance and support your journey toward a life free from alcohol. No matter how long you’ve struggled to overcome your drinking problem or alcoholism, alcohol counseling will be the tool that helps make a significant difference in your recovery.
Most alcohol rehab centers will use comprehensive treatment plans during the treatment process. Comprehensive treatment plans are developed to treat the person as a whole, and it usually includes physical treatments like exercise, nutrition, withdrawal management, mental, emotional, and spiritual treatment.
It will consist of various care levels, including inpatient or outpatient rehab, counseling sessions, medication-assisted treatment (MAT), support groups, and other treatment types. Support groups and counseling sessions are vital during and after treatment to develop a recovery plan for long-term sobriety.
You shouldn’t let alcoholism define you, and by seeking out the help of a counselor, you can learn how to manage and prevent triggers, deal with cravings, and live an overall healthier lifestyle.
We can’t definitively say what an alcohol counselor will offer you because each process is different for everyone. In most cases, you’ll meet your alcohol counselor often individually and during group sessions in the earlier stages of recovery. Depending on your progression, you’ll start attending fewer meetings. However, you might schedule a meeting with your counselor between sessions if you’re having a challenging week or might relapse.
An alcohol counselor may also help with the following:
Before you start alcohol counseling, you must find a counselor that you feel comfortable being around. You need to find a counselor you can be honest with when you talk to because you’ll be able to open up tremendously, which helps with the recovery process. However, it’s important to understand that your counselor can only guide you on your recovery journey. It’ll be up to you to remain active in treatment and apply what you’ve learned toward your recovery.
You need to take your time when researching alcohol counselors. A person who worked for someone else may not work with you. Once you find a few that fit your needs, talk with them and ask questions about your concerns. It will help you choose the right counselor.
Keep the following tips in mind when you research an alcohol counselor:
Alcohol counseling offers many benefits that will help you get sober and stay there. The techniques and tools you learn during your time with a counselor can be applied to situations you face at school, work, or even in your personal life. Although some parts of it may be challenging, you’ll uncover the underlying issues that pushed you into drinking and learn to overcome them. Without digging into the problem, you’ll only be putting a band-aid on it in the short-term.
Other benefits include setting up benchmarks and goals, managing and preventing triggers, conquering obstacles, and finding new hobbies. During counseling, you’ll be exposed to new things that you may have never thought of otherwise, which in turn helps you stay sober. You won’t know unless you try it, so maybe it’s time to look into an alcohol counselor and overcome alcoholism.
CDC (January 2021) Alcohol and Public Health. from https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/index.htm
NIAAA (January 2021) Alcohol Facts and Statistics. from https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/brochures-and-fact-sheets/alcohol-facts-and-statistics
NCBI (September 2016) Cognitive-behavioral therapy. from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279297/
SAMHSA (January 2021) MAT. from https://www.samhsa.gov/medication-assisted-treatment
NIAAA (January 2021) Understanding Alcohol Use Disorder. from https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/brochures-and-fact-sheets/understanding-alcohol-use-disorder