Alcohol dependency is a very big problem in the United States. Researchers estimate that around 14.4 million adults aged 18 and over are addicted to alcohol in the U.S.
If you are struggling with a drinking problem, you are definitely not alone and you need to get help right away. Here are five tips to help you overcome an addiction to alcohol if you wish to give up drinking for good.
1) Set goals
Successfully kicking the habit becomes more difficult if you embark upon your journey without clear goals in mind. If you endeavor to stop drinking alcohol completely, you must set a date upon which you plan to quit.
If you want to start by reducing your alcohol consumption, you will need to set detailed goals. For example, “I will stop drinking alcohol during the week starting from 1 June”, or “I will drink no more than five drinks in one weekend starting from tomorrow.”
Remember to set realistic goals and seek out the support you need before getting started. In doing so, you will dramatically improve your chances of sticking to your objectives.
2) Create a support system
A strong support system is crucial for recovering from an addiction to alcohol. Many people find all of the support that they need in their relatives and close friends. You’ll need positive influences in your life that respect your commitment to sobriety and don’t tempt you to drink.
3) Attend A.A. meetings
Others prefer to connect with people with experience overcoming alcohol addiction. If this sounds like you, we recommend that you join an alcohol addiction support group either online, in-person, or both.
In-person alcohol addiction support groups are usually called ‘Alcoholics Anonymous’ groups and comprise of individuals who are all struggling with a dependency on alcohol. The people involved in these meetings will be in various phases of recovery and will come from a host of different backgrounds.
Don’t feel stressed about attending your first meeting because you think that you will be forced to admit you are an alcoholic. Not everyone is ready to share stories about their problems, but this doesn’t mean you should avoid attending. The great thing about these meetings is that people are encouraged only to share when they feel comfortable doing so, and you are never required to ‘admit’ to anything.
4) Consider getting help from an addiction center
You must turn to an addiction center for help if you are a very heavy drinker and have been for a long time.
According to The Virginia Center for Addiction Medicine in Richmond VA, those who have been abusing alcohol for extended periods may not just suffer from severe withdrawal symptoms; they could also put their lives at risk.
In these cases, it is safer to put your recovery in the hands of a professional who can assist you with a tailored, medically supervised detoxification. Search for an addiction center that specializes in supportive drug and alcohol detox programs.
5) Look after yourself
Proper self-care is an essential part of addiction recovery. Now is the time to make changes to your daily habits to help facilitate a sober lifestyle.
Ensure that you are taking care of yourself in the following ways:
• Getting at least seven hours of sleep
• Eating a balanced diet
• Exercising as much as possible
Most importantly, take extra care of your mental health, especially when it comes to stress. Find a productive way to relieve stress and anxiety, such as taking up a new hobby, getting a massage weekly, or giving meditation a try.
Overcoming an addiction to alcohol is possible – you just need to decide to act. Best of luck on your journey to recovery!