What is Alcohol Rehab Like in North Carolina?
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, “14.5 million (nearly 15 million) people ages 12 and older had alcohol use disorder”. Alcoholism is a chronic and progressive disease that causes an array of adverse social, emotional, mental, and physical effects.
Because of the lasting negative effects of alcoholism, attending professional alcohol addiction treatment is vital. Individuals suffering from this condition require a continuum of care to fully recover. Treatment should include medical detoxification, evidence-based therapies, and relapse prevention planning.
Alcohol rehab programs in North Carolina provide struggling individuals with the treatment they deserve and need.
Medical Detox for Alcohol
Everyone who attends alcoholism treatment will begin with a medical detox program. When someone is addicted to alcohol, their body begins to depend on it to function properly. Removing this substance from one’s body will cause symptoms of withdrawal to occur.
The symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include:
- Anxiety and depression
- Sleep disruptions
- A Shakiness of the hands
- Changes in blood pressure and heart rate
- Nausea and vomiting
- Delirium tremens (DTs)
Medical detox for alcohol dependency works to safely rid an individual’s body of alcohol by lessening symptoms of withdrawal and preventing cravings. Medications will be provided to combat the severe withdrawal symptoms patients face. For example, individuals struggling with insomnia will be provided with sleeping aids, while people with depression may be given anti-depression medications.
Benzodiazepines may also be provided to lessen the symptoms of withdrawal altogether. These are provided under the direction of a doctor to ensure patient safety and medication adherence.
Inpatient Treatment for Alcoholism
After completing detox, the next step is attending inpatient treatment. Inpatient treatment programs require the individual to live at the facility throughout the program. Typically, individuals spend anywhere from 2 to 6 months completing inpatient alcohol rehab.
To address the psychological causes and effects of alcoholism, individuals will attend individual therapy sessions. Inpatient alcohol rehab in North Carolina uses evidence-based addiction therapies to combat the negative patterns of thinking and replace them with healthy coping mechanisms.
Examples of evidence-based therapies used during inpatient rehab include:
- Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Contingency Management (CM)
- Motivational Interviewing (MI)
- The Matrix Model
- 12-Step Facilitation Therapy
- Family Therapy
Additionally, individuals suffering from co-occurring disorders will receive individual therapy to manage their symptoms. Medications will be provided if necessary.
Group counseling is one of the most important aspects of alcoholism treatment. Addiction experts have found that attending group therapy provides recovering alcoholics with interpersonal connections that they desperately need. This helps patients bond with others, realize they are not alone, and learn how to create healthy relationships based on mutual respect.
Relapse Prevention Planning
Relapse prevention planning is a tool used to help graduating patients remain sober on a long-term basis.
To explain, leaving alcoholism treatment can be difficult. The individual gets used to being held accountable by the staff members and being sheltered from outside triggers. Once they leave treatment, they have to keep themselves accountable as they deal with stressors and triggers at home, work, or school.
Relapse prevention planning teaches patients how to navigate real-world triggers without using alcohol as a coping mechanism. Aspects of a relapse prevention plan include:
- List of relapse warning signs specific to the individual
- List of personal triggers for substance abuse
- Sober support contacts to call in times of need
- Plan for recovery maintenance like weekly therapy, attending alcoholism support groups and going to alumni support meetings
- Plan for damage control in case of a relapse, including people to call and programs to attend
Who Needs Alcohol Rehab?
Anyone who has an unhealthy relationship with alcohol would benefit from alcoholism treatment.
The signs someone needs alcohol addiction treatment include:
- Drinking more alcohol than intended or drinking for longer than intended
- Wanting to cut down or stop alcohol consumption but being unable to
- Spending a lot of time drinking or recovering from drinking
- Experiencing cravings for alcohol
- Alcohol use interferes with work, school, or home life
- Continuing to drink despite facing consequences
- Losing interest in beloved activities due to alcohol use
- Continuing to drink despite feeling anxious, depressed, or experiencing worsened symptoms of a pre-existing mental health condition
- Experiencing alcohol withdrawal symptoms when alcohol consumption is stopped or cut down
How Long Does Alcohol Rehab Take?
The length of treatment depends on a variety of factors, including:
- Severity of alcoholism
- Length of use
- Co-occurring disorders
- Physical health conditions
- Risk of relapse
- Levels of familial support
- Treatment progress
However, the typical amount of time spent in detox is 2 weeks. For inpatient treatment, most individuals spend at least 90 days in their program. Some people may opt to attend outpatient programs and sober living programs after completing inpatient treatment.
Is Hitting “Rock Bottom” Necessary?
In short, no. Hitting rock bottom is not necessary for recovery. The individual only needs to want to recover for treatment to be successful.
The idea that hitting rock bottom is the only way to recover from alcoholism is very harmful. This can lead to unnecessary health conditions and even life-threatening complications like alcoholic seizures from long-term alcohol abuse. In other words, early intervention is the best way to treat alcoholism, rather than waiting for a rock bottom that may never come.
Start an Alcohol Rehab Program in North Carolina Today
If you or a loved one suffer from alcohol abuse or alcoholism, it is time to attend professional treatment. Alcohol addiction treatment in North Carolina uses evidence-based approaches to help you or your loved one recover from the disease of alcoholism.
Call now to speak with an addiction specialist about starting your recovery today.