Alcohol addiction is often described as a physical dependency on alcohol and a mental compulsion to consume it. The key distinction between alcohol addiction and alcohol abuse is a matter of choice. An alcohol abuser will make a choice to consume alcohol in excess – but an addict does not have such a luxury, addicts are compelled to consume alcohol and will often go to great lengths to obtain it.
The Health Consequences
Normal alcohol consumption is regularly associated with health benefits – a glass of wine every evening, for example, has a number of beneficial health effects. The same cannot be said, however, for alcohol addiction of which the number of negative health implications is very high. Alcohol addiction can reduce one’s life expectancy by up to 12 years and this drastic reduction in life expectancy is linked to an increased likelihood of developing the following conditions:
- Liver damage (cirrhosis).
- Heart and cardiovascular disease.
- Many forms of cancer.
- Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Accepting The Problem
The first step on the road to recovery is always acceptance of the fact that one has an addiction. After one has made this first step, there are a number of other steps to be completed. These include detoxification, rehabilitation and finally abstinence.
Recovering from an alcohol addiction is a long and hard road indeed – the act of quitting itself can be dangerous for the addict. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome can result in hospitalization and often makes people seriously ill, in some cases leading to death. Medical supervision and counseling are recommended throughout the process of recovery.
Here at Thriveworks Counseling in Birmingham, MI our alcohol addiction counselors specialize in counseling methods proven to help you throughout your rehabilitation. We tailor our methods to fit the individual client and hope to help put you on your path to recovery. Reach out to us now for a no-obligation introductory call.