Did you know that people who regularly participate in high-intensity drinking are seventy times more likely to have alcohol-related emergency room visits than people who do not binge drink?
It can be painful and difficult to have a friend or family member who is addicted to alcohol, especially if you are not sure how to help them.
The good news is that there are several effective things you can do to support somebody with an alcohol addiction. We’ve written a guide to help you out. Keep reading if you want to find out more.
Recognize the Warning Signs of Alcohol Addiction
For lots of people, drinking alcohol is a normal part of daily life. Many people also believe that it is socially acceptable to drink alcohol when they go out with friends.
The problem is that everybody reacts to drinking alcohol in different ways. And it is not always easy to recognize when a family member or friend’s alcohol use has crossed the line from responsible use to alcohol addiction.
The best way to know if somebody you care about is abusing alcohol is by taking notice of how their alcohol use is affecting their life.
If this person is drinking alcohol in order to deal with stress or problems in their life, this might be a signal that their drinking has become a problem.
You should also take notice if your loved one often neglects their responsibilities at home or work because of their drinking.
Other warning signs include drinking to self-medicate mental health problems such as depression and anxiety, lying about how much they are drinking, and blacking out on a regular basis.
The best thing that you can do if you notice these warning signs is to do plenty of research about addiction and alcohol abuse.
This will help to prepare you for having a conversation about alcohol with your friend or loved one.
Supporting Family and Friends: Express Your Genuine Concerns
It won’t be easy to speak with your loved one about their drinking. You are probably worried that if you express your concerns, they will become angry and will lash out. They also might deny that they even have a problem.
Even though these are common reactions, you should not let them hold you back from saying anything. Their drinking will probably not get better if you don’t attempt to help them.
It is essential that you honestly express your concerns. But keep in mind that it is not possible to force somebody to stop drinking alcohol.
The decision is up to your friend or family member. The most helpful thing that you can do is offer them guidance to address their problem.
This might include calling a helpline, reaching out to a healthcare professional, or attending an alcohol addiction treatment program.
Encouraging Your Friend or Family Member to Get Help
It can be extremely difficult for people to overcome their drinking problems on their own.
Even if they don’t need to attend an alcohol rehab program, they will still need guidance, support, and helpful coping skills to stop drinking.
The best way to encourage your loved one to get help is by letting them know that you can take them to their important appointments.
You can also offer to sit by their side when they call a helpline to get support.
It is also a good idea to sit down with them to create a concrete plan that outlines what changes they are going to make and how they will do it.
Remember that your friend or family member will still need your support after they’ve taken action to get help.
It can take time for people to recover. This means that it is important to be patient.
Understand the Treatment Options
In order to figure out the best treatment options for your loved one, you’ll need to understand the depth of their alcohol addiction, the stability of their living situation, and what other kinds of health issues they might have.
You should encourage them to visit their primary care doctor. A doctor can evaluate their drinking patterns, analyze their overall health, and offer suggestions of where they can get treatment.
Some people are able to overcome their alcohol addictions by regularly attending 12-step programs and support groups.
This is a great option if your friend or family member wants to spend time with other people who are struggling with similar problems.
Not only will this help your loved one to overcome their sense of isolation. They will also be able to receive guidance and support on staying sober from others who understand what it is like to be addicted to alcohol.
Your loved one should also consider attending individual or group therapy sessions. Therapists can help recovering alcoholics to identify the deeper reasons why they’ve been abusing alcohol.
They will also develop skills to stop drinking and recognize their drinking triggers.
The best way to help your friend or loved one is by encouraging them to attend an alcohol addiction treatment program.
Here they will be able to receive treatments for detox, participate in therapy sessions, and take medication.
Help Your Friend or Loved One Overcome Alcohol Addiction
It can be challenging to know how to support a friend or family member who has an alcohol addiction. The first and most important thing that you can do is to know how to recognize the warning signs of alcohol addiction.
Are you interested in learning more about helping a friend or family member with their alcohol addiction? If so, we are here to help you. Don’t hesitate to contact us once you are ready to get started.