When an alcoholic enters alcohol substance abuse programming, he or she may be afraid and wondering what will happen to them. Alcohol has been a big part of their life for so long they may be frightened of the future and what the alcoholic faces. Treatment is not an easy road and those who need alcohol substance abuse treatment must deal with a lot of personal and professional issues.
When the alcoholic enters alcohol substance abuse programming, he or she will first go through a detoxification process. This is often separate from the rehab process and involves getting the alcoholic off the drug of choice and in a sober state. Medications may be used to temper some of the anxiety, shakes and nervousness that can come up during detoxification. In serious cases, delirium tremens or seizures can occur so the person needs to be medically treated while they detoxify. Detoxification can take three to seven days after which the person goes into alcohol substance abuse programming or rehab.
Rehab is a several week long program that has specific programming aspects that help the person stay sober for the rest of their lives. The programming is broken down into things such as individual counseling or therapy sessions done several times a week, group therapy sessions, often done daily, and informational programming done on a daily basis. Sometimes there is recreational programming to help the alcoholic in alcohol substance abuse programming realize that they can have fun without alcohol. Exercise also helps the alcoholic heal from their state of being out of shape.
When the patient enters alcohol substance abuse treatment, he or she is given a primary therapist who can be a psychologist, a psychiatric social worker or a psychiatrist. These are people the alcoholic may talk to during sessions in which problems related or unrelated to the alcohol substance abuse are brought up. The alcoholic may have issues related to their childhood that now relate to their drinking behavior. The therapist is a good person to talk to about this.
The alcoholic also attends group therapy. Stories about alcohol-related problems are shared and the camaraderie between the alcoholics helps bond them together and teach them ways to interact without having alcohol lubricate the conversations. The alcoholic opens up more about his or her alcohol substance abuse problem and gets support around not drinking.
The informational programming in alcohol substance abuse programming teaches the alcoholic the dangers of alcohol and helps him or her cognitively understand why stopping drinking is a good idea.