6 Effective Ways to Help Someone with Alcoholism

It is painful to see someone you love and care for struggling with alcohol addiction. Individuals with alcoholism have a physical and psychological dependence on it and drink despite facing its effect. Such habits disturb their professional and personal life.

It is challenging to face them since long-term drinking has changed their behavior. You must have developed a complicated relationship with your close friend or a family member.

Setting healthy limits, getting your family member professional help, and caring for yourself is the most effective way to break free from the cycle of addiction.

Alcohol addiction is a chronic illness that requires the help of a medical professional. The Recovery Team offers residential treatment in a secure and supportive environment.

Key Takeaways

Alcohol abuse, also known as alcohol use disorder (AUD), impacts thousands of lives in the United States. Witnessing a close friend or a family member struggling due to alcoholism can be painful. You can help them overcome addiction by learning about its signs and doing practical things to help your loved one.

  • A person with alcoholism will have a dangerous pattern of drinking.
  • Learn about the signs of alcohol use disorder introduced by DSM-5.
  • You can help a loved one by talking to them, setting healthy limits, and caring for yourself.
  • Look for treatment programs at rehab with your family member or friend with addiction.
  • Rehab centers offer various levels of care and therapies to help your loved one overcome addiction.

The Recovery Team is here for you or your loved one who wants to break the cycle of addiction. Call us at (800) 817-1247.

How to Recognize a Drinking Problem

Many people do not pursue alcohol use as a problem and consider it a regular habit or a way to socialize. Drinking becomes a problem if a woman consumes more than seven drinks weekly. For men, drinking becomes problematic when they consume more than 14 drinks per week.

Alcoholism is a severe disease that can lead to physical and psychological problems. People who engage in binge drinking or suffer from alcohol use disorder (AUD) follow a dangerous pattern of alcohol consumption. Drinking becomes an addiction when a person needs it to function.

They feel comfortable after having alcoholic beverages, which helps them feel happy and satisfied. Moreover, people with AUD drink to escape unpleasant things or overcome depression.

Signs of Alcohol Use Disorder

Alcohol use disorder is a complicated illness because alcohol impacts brain activity, leading them to experience extreme cravings when they try to quit.

The signs of alcohol use disorder introduced by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM-5) include:

  • Spend most of their time drinking alcohol.
  • Tried to overcome addiction but relapsed.
  • Spend time obtaining alcohol and recovering from its effects.
  • Experience intense cravings.
  • Impact on their progress at school or work.
  • Increased family problems due to excessive alcohol use.
  • Lost interest in healthy activities due to alcohol abuse.
  • Continues to use alcohol when it is dangerous for them, like driving a car.
  • Persists in using alcohol despite facing psychological and physical harm.
  • Developed tolerance to alcohol and drank more to experience the soothing effect.
  • Experience withdrawal symptoms within a few hours or days after quitting alcohol.

Ways to Help a Family Member or Friend with Alcohol Addiction

You can do several things to support your loved one with a drinking problem and help them receive professional treatment. It is vital to approach them with love, care, and understanding.

The key is to make them feel safe without enabling them. Following are the ways to help your teen, your parent, or anyone dealing with addiction.

Spot the Signs of Addiction

It is essential to learn about addiction, how a person dealing with addiction feels, and the signs of alcoholism. If you know about it, then you will be able to recognize their unhealthy drinking patterns.

Start a Conversation

You cannot force them to stop drinking in a day and make changes in their lifestyle. Recovery is a long and time-consuming process.

They need your support to seek and continue treatment. Talking to your friend or family member about their alcohol use is an essential step toward helping them.

It can be daunting initially, but the key is to remain calm. Avoid discouraging your loved one with addiction because they will defend the drinking habits and avoid treatment to rebel against you.

Talk openly and honestly, and let them know you are here for them. Moreover, help them recognize how their drinking habits disturb the lives of people around them. Listen to them with attention and give them time to consider treatment.

Avoid Enabling

Are you enabling your loved one without knowing? In various cases of addiction, a friend or family member will provide financial support to the person dealing with addiction.

They are trying to make an effort to improve their health or protect their safety, but instead, they are the ones helping them continue alcohol use.

Enabling factor is there when you make excuses for their behavior. Recovery is not possible when they are not dealing with the consequences of their alcohol addiction.

Set Healthy Boundaries

If your loved one does not agree to recover, it is best to set healthy boundaries. That will improve your relationship with them, and you can also set personal limits.

Ways to set boundaries at home include:

  • Not giving them money when they are leaving the house.
  • Not helping them if they are in jail for an alcohol-related crime.
  • Not making excuses if they are under the influence due to heavy drinking.
  • Not allowing them to use substances at home.

Put Yourself First

The best way to help someone with drug problems is to take care of yourself first. It can be tiring to be worried about someone’s substance abuse habits. You may think that addiction only affects their health, but in reality, it also impacts the mental health of people around them.

You may have exercised or performed yoga in the past, but now you do not give time to yourself. Ensure you get enough sleep and take a hot bath to stay calm.

You can also join support groups like Al-Anon to share your problems in a non-judgmental environment. You can also undergo family therapy to strengthen relationships with those struggling with addiction.

Find Treatment Together

You can convince your loved one to get help by looking for rehab centers with them. Contact healthcare professionals to learn about the best treatment option for them. Ask your friends or other family members for assistance. Get everyone together for a discussion and include your family member dealing with addiction. Discuss the consequences of not getting help for addiction.

Getting a Professional Treatment for a Loved One

Before applying for treatment from a facility, you need to learn about them in detail, the benefits they offer, and the strategy they use. Give your loved one time to accept receiving treatment at a rehab center. Consult a medical professional for more information.

Inpatient Treatment

Inpatient or residential rehab is recommended for individuals who cannot control the use of alcohol and require medical attention for a successful recovery. Clients with substance use disorders must stay at the facility for 30 to 90 days. They will live in a drug-free setting and will follow a schedule.

Patients at The Recovery Team will attend individual and group therapy to learn new life skills and cope with alcohol cravings. Rehab centers also offer an aftercare program to ensure that patients are moving forward with their recovery after moving back home. The cost of this rehab depends on the location and facility they offer.

Outpatient Treatment

Suppose your family member is in the early stages of alcohol or drug addiction and can handle cravings without professional care. In that case, an outpatient program is a suitable treatment. This level of care follows a flexible schedule, and the facilities they offer are the same as the inpatient program.

You need to attend therapy sessions daily and can leave the facility after that. You will observe positive changes after attending individual and group meetings.

At The Recovery Team, we offer outpatient treatment and rehab programs. A therapist and professional medical staff will help them learn better ways to live without alcohol use.