Alcohol is a legal, easy to access drug, which is socially acceptable and in fact encouraged in our society. There’s a bar, pub, or off-license on every corner. Alcohol is easily available when we do our weekly shop and if you socialise you will almost always be encouraged to have a “proper drink”. It is not uncommon for people to drink to get drunk, or drink to excess and take risks such as drinking and driving. All these reasons lead to it being difficult to identify whether you, or your loved one has a problem with alcohol and is actually addicted, or whether they “just like a drink”.
How can I tell if I’m addicted?
If you think your drinking is getting out of control and you are concerned about how much you’re drinking don’t worry, there is help out there and it’s never too late, or too early, to make a change. There’s an easy test that you can make to check for addiction to alcohol – can you stop drinking? This sounds simple for a so-called “normal” drinker, but if you are an alcoholic, you cannot simply have one drink, or decide not to drink when you go out, you have a compulsion to drink.
There are a few good resources to check whether your drinking is healthy, such as this Check Your Drinking Quiz from charity Alcohol Change UK and this alcohol abuse quiz from verywellmind. Answering these questions should help you to reflect on your drinking. Another way to check is to take part in an initiative such as Dry January, when millions of people pledge to have an alcohol-free month. Following a well-publicised programme such as this, and using the tools such as the app and the support groups on Facebook, is a way to quit drinking without needing to admit that there’s a problem and show yourself whether it is possible for you to live without alcohol.
How to seek help for alcohol addiction
Once you’ve identified that there is a problem, that your drinking is harming yourself and others and you can’t stop, a good first step is to see your GP. They can officially assess your drinking and then inform you about what addiction help is out there for you. There’s a great article on the NHS website about alcohol misuse and the help that’s available. This can include counselling, medicine and medical supported detoxification.
If you feel uncomfortable visiting your GP, or ashamed to admit your addiction to them, that’s OK too. Try calling the Alcoholics Anonymous helpline on 0800 9177 650 or visit their website to find your nearest group and meeting. There’s also a live chat box on their website if you prefer to chat in that way. The AA’s 12-step programme has helped millions of people around the world to recover from alcoholism and their meetings are free. Their purpose is “to stay sober ourselves and help others who may turn to us for help in achieving sobriety” and going to a meeting near you is a great first step to stopping drinking for good.
As a family member of an alcoholic there is help out there for you as well, through the AA’s subsidiary group Al-Anon
There are many private rehabilitation centres with qualified and experienced addiction specialists able to support you to get sober and start your life free from addiction to alcohol. These are either inpatient (residential) rehabilitation centres, or outpatient or (day) rehabilitation centres. They offer a safe place, away from the judgement of others, where you can be supported to remove the alcohol from your system. You will receive the treatment you need to get to the root of the problem and stop you drinking again when you return home.
Alcohol rehab Spain
At our private rehabilitation centre in Marbella, we offer addiction treatment programmes which are personalised and tailored to you. Our programme is based on abstinence and combines withdrawing from alcohol with therapy, CBT, nutritional rehabilitation, yoga and fitness training. This combination strengthens your body and mind, gets to the root of your addiction and arms you with the tools that you need to successfully live in the outside world without alcohol. Our luxury rehab facilities, in the beautiful setting of Marbella, is the perfect place to get sober, either with our residential programmes or our dayhab. If travelling isn’t an option, we also offer online addiction treatment programmes which you can follow wherever you are. Contact The Bridge to find out how we can help you.
Don’t be trapped by the vicious cycle of alcohol addiction. Pledge to make a change today, admit you have a problem and seek help. We believe that anyone can live without alcohol in their lives. Get the help that you need to make that your reality.