Alcoholism is a very serious problem. It affects not only the person it directly concerns, but also the entire environment around him. The alcoholic can often underestimate the problem, not see the scale of it, and feel that the whole world is against it. However, if you want to help him out of the problem, you have to fight that belief. There is no magic cure for alcoholism. If a sick person and their entire environment pretend that the problem does not exist – it will not disappear at all, it will only get worse.
What Is Alcoholism?
To start thinking about how to help an alcoholic, first start with the basics. The most important thing is to understand the essence of the problem. What is Alcoholism? It is a very serious, progressive disease. It has a negative impact on the physical and mental health of a person, and also affects his immediate surroundings. Alcohol destroys the body and destroys families. Alcohol causes acts of violence and aggression, especially against the closest environment.
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Alcoholism is also the cause of financial problems – a drinker loses interest in everything not related to alcohol over time – he often goes under its influence during the day, also at work – therefore he often loses his job, also in disciplinary mode. All money is also spent on alcohol, which becomes a first-aid product for the sick person.
Alcoholism is a very serious problem – it can affect both women and men. Children who grew up in families with an alcohol problem may suffer from ACA – Adult Children of Alcoholics Syndrome in their later adult life.
Alcohol destroys the liver, kidneys and heart – it contributes to cardiovascular disease, cirrhosis and many other health problems. It is still quite an embarrassing problem – so to start the treatment process, you first need to understand the essence of the problem and admit that there is such a problem in the family.
How To Help Alcoholic?
The alcoholic definitely needs help. Very often, however, he is not aware of it because he does not see his problem. Quite a few alcoholics believe they are in complete control of the situation and only drink alcohol for entertainment – such people believe that if they wanted to, they could stop at any time. However, as they themselves say – they do not want to. This is a lie – one that the addict himself often believes.
How to help an alcoholic? At the very beginning, you need to stop pretending the problem isn’t there. The problem is very serious. Alcoholism is a disease that, if left untreated, can even lead to death.
If you really want to help, you cannot justify a sick person and do everything for them – doing things out and justifying them can only reassure them that they do not have to take responsibility for themselves and their lives.
Constructive help is not always easy – it is usually very difficult in this case. It is not uncommon for the immediate family to suffer from codependency. Social mechanisms also play an important role here – and in the case of alcoholism, it is often the practice to pretend that the problem does not exist. Shame is closely related to alcoholism but needs to be overcome.
First, make the alcoholic aware that he or she has a problem. It’s best to do this when he’s completely sober. It’s not about shouting, arguing and making fights – quite the contrary! It is best to gather a group of people who wish the sick person the best and calmly, in a friendly atmosphere to talk to the sick person. Explain the essence of the problem to her and make them realize that the problem actually exists and affects everyone badly. Such a method is simply called an intervention method.
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The next step is to realize that the alcoholic – even if he has the best intentions – will not be able to cope with this unequal struggle alone. The support of relatives – although very necessary – is also not able to replace professional therapy.
Help for an alcoholic must be multi-stage and comprehensive, because the problem of alcohol addiction itself is very complex. Drug treatment will be required. Often, a detox must also take place – detoxifying the body from alcohol is a difficult but necessary process. The most important thing is to help the alcoholic regain the body’s natural balance.
A detox, while essential, only helps you deal with the physical problems caused by alcohol and alcohol withdrawal. Pharmacological treatment – although very important – is also only a form of supportive therapy aimed at alleviating the damage caused to the body by drinking.
The most important thing is psychotherapy. It is she who allows you to deal with problems and free yourself from the mental compulsion to drink alcohol. During therapy, the alcoholic learns to function again in society – he trains interpersonal and social skills. The addicted person also learns to be assertive and to refuse alcohol.