Overcoming Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol has a sedative effect on the brain in which it suppresses certain neurotransmitters, causing people to feel at ease after drinking. This is why when consuming alcohol, people experience initial feelings of happiness, increased sociability, and relaxation. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome occurs when a person abruptly stops drinking after heavy alcohol use and may trigger life-threatening health complications. Laundry, dishes, floors, pick on and distract yourself from the cravings to drink. Another excellent home remedy to stop drinking alcohol is to take a cold shower. Cold showers can clear your mind, ease the hot flashes of alcohol withdrawal, and refresh your body. After you remind yourself why you quit drinking alcohol, write down the consequences if you start drinking again.

11 ways to curb your drinking – Harvard Health

11 ways to curb your drinking.

Posted: Mon, 22 Jun 2020 17:50:52 GMT [source]

Once you have set your goals to either stop or reduce your drinking, write down some ideas on how you can accomplish these goals. When you stop drinking, you might find yourself dealing with cravings for alcohol. Learn why this common response happens Drug rehabilitation and how to cope with it. Crystal Raypole has previously worked as a writer and editor for GoodTherapy. Her fields of interest include Asian languages and literature, Japanese translation, cooking, natural sciences, sex positivity, and mental health.

Don’t Let Alcohol Control Your Life

While studies have shown baclofen may be effective in reducing symptoms of alcohol withdrawal, including tremors, it is an “off-label” use of the drug at this time. Heavy alcohol consumption causes changes in brain chemistry, slowing brain activity and reducing energy levels.

  • What you can do is speak to them about your concerns, with a sense of empathy and open-ness.
  • Recovering from alcohol addiction or heavy drinking is not a quick and easy process.
  • Alcohol misuse often occurs as an attempt to manage stress.
  • It’s often easier to turn down a drink when you don’t have to do it alone.
  • There are many options for treating alcohol misuse, dependence, or addiction.

The downside is that cold turkey can also leave you feeling drained and vulnerable. This might actually encourage relapse, and then make you scared to quit again. Some people qualify as “high-functioning alcoholics,” meaning they appear to be living a normal daily life despite struggling with a drinking problem. But this doesn’t prevent these health consequences from happening below the surface.

The more you know, the better you’ll be able to find the right solution. At least 5.6 percent of Americans over the age of 18 struggle with alcohol use disorder. Make it clear that drinking will not be allowed in your home and that you may not be able to attend events where alcohol is being served. Get helpful tips and guidance for everything from fighting inflammation to finding the best diets for weight loss…from exercises to build a stronger core to advice on treating cataracts. PLUS, the latest news on medical advances and breakthroughs from Harvard Medical School experts.

How Long Does It Take To Quit Drinking?

Instead of offering ultimatums, offer advice or options for help. This means doing your research ahead of time and knowing some good programs to refer a loved one to, or being familiar with a professional they can talk to for help. If you think you have alcohol use disorder, talk to your doctor about whether you need to withdraw from alcohol under medical supervision. Your doctor can give you medicine that will help you safely withdraw from alcohol. Other medicines might be prescribed later to help you stay sober. Consider whether you want to cut back or stop drinking completely. Talk to your doctor to decide what makes the most sense for you right now.

how to stop drinking alcohol on my own

None, however, require you to believe in a higher power, or work within the 12 steps. If you’re really serious about quitting drinking, you may find that the support group aspect of AA gives you needed community and structure. But you may also find that additional methods, with a stronger basis in scientific evidence, are needed.

Quitting Alcohol: A Timeline

Or approach this strategy from the reverse and schedule alcohol-free days. Another way to determine if it’s time to cut back on or stop drinking alcohol is to assess your life and ask yourself, “Am I an Alcoholic?”. By avoiding alcohol, you’re taking a big step toward improving physical health. As you begin to notice those health benefits, you’ll likely feel more energized and inspired to keep up your progress. With the brain in this excited, overactive state, a person with a chronic alcohol problem may not sleep well, may feel more anxious or may develop the shakes, Swift explained.

how to stop drinking alcohol on my own

Instead of stopping cold turkey, alcohol may be slowly tapered off to keep from shocking the system. Medications, like long-acting benzodiazepines, may be used to replace the alcohol in some instances. The simplest way to taper off your alcohol consumption is to gradually reduce the number of drinks that you usually drink over a period of time.

Handling Setbacks In Your Recovery

Twenty-Four Hours a Day is a roadmap that keeps you pointing in the right direction in your recovery from addiction. If you need help and need to speak to someone right away, you can reach out to Sober Grid’s virtual sober community for support by selecting the “Burning Desire” button. Users of Sober Grid can also find sober friends while traveling away from home, be it in an airport or a new city. The network connects people both locally or from anywhere in the world.

how to stop drinking alcohol on my own

Remove alcohol, and you’ll suddenly find yourself in overdrive. Since the 1990s, naltrexone has been approved by the FDA to treat alcohol use disorder. This drug limits the pleasurable effects of drinking without making you feel sick. Naltrexone is a key component in the Sinclair Method, which uses targeted doses of this drug to help people moderate or quit over time. It is also available as a monthly injection , or as a daily pill.

I know it’s not for everyone, but I’d definitely suggest trying to find something you love that you had neither the time or the energy for after drinking. It could be baking, doing a fitness DVD or simply arranging more early morning outings with the kids.

Frankly Assess Your Relationship With Alcohol

There are quite a few apps around that can help you track the number of days you’ve given up something, but I’d say the top-rated‘I Am Sober’ is the best. This method seeks to undo all of the brainwashing you’ve been exposed to about alcohol. Promises to help you quit – without the need for willpower! The urge to drink will inevitably come—so make a plan for it.

Like anything else in life, it is not easy to change behavior, even when it might be in your best interest. But the more you practice new behaviors, the more likely it is that they will become habits. If you try this plan but are not successful, talk with your doctor about other ways to stop drinking alcohol. Your first step might be to see your doctor, contact a support group, or set a date in the near future to stop.

how to stop drinking alcohol on my own

Alcohol abuse and addiction affects millions of adults in the United States each year, and can have serious consequences on physical and mental health. People tapering off alcohol may begin experiencing early withdrawal symptoms within 6 to 12 hours after their last drink. Over the next few days, additional symptoms may also appear. Medical detox programs for alcohol dependency commonly offer medications to ease the discomfort or pain of withdrawal. This is a benefit that isn’t available to all who attempt to taper at home. Medicines can be used to reduce nausea, severe anxiety, other flu-like symptoms, and treat seizures.

Clear Your Brain

“I’m not your dad; I’m not the cops,” Dr. Prylinski says. If you’re unsure how to talk about your own drinking, he suggests discussing more general alcohol issues first. Fitness Centers Our fitness centers focus on disease prevention, rehabilitation and general health maintenance. Heart A nationally recognized heart center providing comprehensive heart and vascular health services.

how to stop drinking alcohol on my own

Sometime between days 5 and 7, moderate to severe withdrawal symptoms typically lessen. The side effects and strong cravings for alcohol often make it difficult for people to avoid relapse without a stable environment and professional help. When alcohol enters the brain, it causes levels of dopamine and GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) to be increased.

Here are a couple of my favourites, with more suggestions listed below. Does physical activity moderate the association between alcohol drinking and all-cause, cancer and cardiovascular diseases mortality? Join thousands of people using psychology and habit change to enjoy drinking on their own terms. Whether you want to simply optimize or cut back, Cutback Coach can help. Prepare yourself for those times when someone is going to offer you a drink. You might also hold onto a nonalcoholic drink instead, ask a friend to support you in difficult situations or simply exit early if temptation gets too strong, the NIAAA suggests.

But overall, be cautious about giving up alcohol cold turkey, and consider tapering off if possible. Get access to medical counseling, prescription medications, licenced recovery coaches, and more—all from the comfort of your own home at a fraction of alcohol recovery tips the cost of rehab. The truth is that, while there are some effective programs out there, the recovery industry has grown to be very large and is not highly regulated. There is no guarantee that the program you are signing up for is truly effective.


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