Alcohol rehabilitation is essential for any alcoholic seeking to regain control over their life. Alcoholism is a serious and devastating condition which can have extensive negative effects not only to the victim, but also to those close to them. As a result, rehabilitation centers are more and more important. The main purpose of these facilities is to provide an environment to the sufferer, which will protect them and keep them free from alcohol.
There are a number of benefits to seeking help in a rehabilitation facility as opposed to trying to quit without the supervision of an alcohol addiction treatment professional. Here is how the alcohol rehabilitation centers benefit the addict.
Proper Guidance and Supervision
Alcohol rehabilitation centers give a fresh approach to life. Most of them have intact staff, well trained, qualified and experienced in handling individuals who are suffering from the pangs of alcohol addiction. Here, the psychological and other health complications of alcohol addiction are treated. The centers treat the alcoholic in a well-organized environment designed specifically for effective recovery.
The rehabilitation programs carried out by rehab specialists are the best means for an alcohol addict to attain meaningful and long-lasting recovery. These centers provide proper guidance and treatment services to all groups of people; children, youth and adults. The positive atmosphere created by these centers can definitely have a positive effect on the addict’s well-being.
Variety of Rehabilitation Programs
There are typically many types of addiction treatment programs offered at the rehabilitation centers. These programs have the capacity to restore the psychological normalcy of the addict and also ensure the best achievable treatment for that individual. Some of the programs include in-patient alcohol rehab, out-patient rehabilitation, residential programs as well as aftercare relapse prevention.
One of the more effective and most common treatments in a rehab center is the three-step program. It is composed of intervention, alcohol detoxification, and rehabilitation process. Treatments are given continuously to monitor improvement. However, the efficiency of alcohol addiction treatments can vary for different individuals as they have specific needs and need some specific kind of treatment to attend to their individual requirements.
Prevention and Promotion of Good Habits
In any alcohol rehabilitation process, it is very crucial to instill good habits and prevent the possibility of relapse. Without being aware of the reasons why the addiction became unmanageable, a relapse is possible. So the objective of rehabilitation centers is to persuade the alcoholic to quit drinking; by giving them enough motivation and showing them that their lives can be better if they lead an alcohol-free life.
These centers will equip the recovering patient with useful insights and information on how to return to the world and uphold their sobriety. The addict will also get a large amount of privacy by attending an alcohol rehabilitation program. This will allow them to recognize their problem and strategize on how they want to get on with their life without alcohol.
About a year ago at one of my presentations, a woman in the audience who was focused on the presentation, stood up and declared that she was a victim of childhood sexual abuse. She reported that around her 28th birthday, she began to experience flashbacks of those torturing years. As I listened to her story I could understand that she had been in pain for many years without any relief. I interrupted with a simple question: “Why do you think that flashbacks of traumatic life events return to consciousness when you really want to forget them forever?” She hesitated for a few seconds, searched her thoughts and ultimately was unable to give a clear answer.
I had discussed this topic with so many survivors over the years, which had experienced the same latent reaction to childhood trauma. Roughly 76 percent of survivors of have re-experiencing recollections. Too many believe that the re-experiencing of memories of childhood trauma is a sign of weakness. Like the woman at my presentation, survivors think that they are being punished and that there is no way out of their pain. They have attempted everything from medication to years of intense therapy.
The answer has to do with the way the brain treats traumatic memory differently from non-traumatic memory. Simply the brain is about order and process. Everyday non-traumatic memory is stored in an orderly fashion. Traumatic memory is stored in an un-orderly process for protection of the victim. The brain is not attempting to present pain when it brings traumatic memory back to consciousness instead it wants the unprocessed traumatic memory to be processed, the emotions closed and the memory then to be filed in the normal way in long-term storage. Flashbacks are the brain’s way of seeking order, even though it does not feel that way to the recipient.
The natural response of the recipient is to repress the recollection with whatever means possible. What survivors all are striving for is relief from the intrusiveness. This requires a new mindset. According to pilot study conducted with survivors of severe childhood abuse and trauma there is a guided protocol which can assist the brain to achieve order with traumatic memory. This pilot study revealed “the purpose of the guided protocol is to give the survivor the opportunity to make emotional closure with past overwhelming emotional events”.
What I know for sure is that if you’re looking for complete amnesia from past hurts, you will always be disappointed. Closure is the best that can be accomplished. In the end, you’re the only person that can make closure with your past. So facing you’re painful emotions head on with a safe protocol can give your brain finality? There is nothing a therapist or medication can say or do with memory that can give you what you can give to yourself.
If you are searching for a sense of closure from intruding recollections of abusive or traumatic life events, I encourage you to look no further than inside yourself. Understand that your brain is searching for order. Help it reach its objective by not shying away from the process. The storing of abusive or traumatic memories in an obscured location was God’s gift of protection, and say “thank you” and move forward toward health. The irony of the process is that your brain brings back unfinished recollections not to hurt you but instead to complete what was not done at the time of the overwhelming life event.
A young mother brought a seven year old boy to my office. The young man, an intelligent boy, had suddenly started to throw up on being taken to the school. He pleaded and begged his mother not to send him to school. On investigation I learnt that he had developed a fear of school that came from his fear of a particular male teacher. This teacher’s fault was that he spoke loudly, which frightened the boy. If this fear would not have been addressed, the young man could have developed fear of authority figures, school, academics in general and even cars, in which he was being driven to school. Later he may have developed generalised anxiety and even agoraphobia, which would have prevented him to go out of the house.
Trauma and stress, though different words, are linked together. Trauma-physical, psychological or emotional- produces stress. We can define trauma as an event that is usually sudden and unexpected (but can also be expected as in abuse) that disturbs the body and the mind for a short or long period of time. As such, the disturbance that body and the mind experience is termed ‘Stress’ or ‘Bad Stress’. Such stress can be experienced for a short period or can be prolonged, when it can become chronic. At such times, the body gets used to the tensions and the person carrying this tension believes they are relaxed. Traumatic stress or ‘Bad Stress’ is a term that is unrecognised in medical diagnostic terminology.
However, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (also known as PTSD) is a recognised medical condition. As the name suggests, it develops due to stress that follows a traumatic event. Any threatening experience that a person goes through or witnesses can trigger symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. This syndrome consists of cluster of symptoms that include nightmares, flashbacks of the traumatic event, increased irritability, sensitiveness to slight noise, sleep disturbances, avoidance of any image or memory that reminds the sufferer of the trauma. If these symptoms do not occur at the same time, the person is not medically suffering with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. These symptoms are commonly seen in people following a road traffic accident, natural catastrophes like earthquakes and hurricanes, fires, torture, physical and sexual abuse and in wars.
From the perspective of human body and mind, any experience that is interpreted as threatening by the unconscious mind is considered traumatic and so becomes stressful. Say if a parent, for example, screams at a child the child’s mind can register it as stressful, depending on the child’s temperament. This experience can be perceived as traumatic though it is not a life-threatening event. Even if the experience of screaming is short-lived, it could remain alive in the child’s mind for a long time. This could continue to affect the thinking and behaviour of the child till the issue is addressed. Bullying, neglect, rejection, corporal punishment and humiliation are examples of events that the mind perceives as threatening-not life threatening but threatening the sense of freedom. Though single events have powerful impact, repetitive perceived threats could become traumatic for the person. Any experiences that create fear or anger that are suppressed are equated with traumatic events by the mind.
A middle-aged lady once came to see me for issues that had arisen because of five deaths in her immediate family within a short space of time. Her childhood had been uneventful and happy which was reflected in how she related with her husband and her children. Though she did not have any life threatening issues, these losses had become distressing for her. The body had to follow the mind and so she became sad, unable to focus on day-to-day life.
When a child is brought up in an environment of extreme strictness, there is a loss of freedom that is experienced by the mind of the child. It occurs unconsciously. If there is no positive approval in the child’s life, the strictness becomes a trauma. If there is lack of opportunities for emotional expression, traumatic stress is experienced.
Hormones and chemicals called neurotransmitters govern our body’s physiological activities. Bad Stress is experienced when a hormone called cortisol is secreted in excess in the body. The role of this hormone is to stir up the body to enable it to escape or fight any threat that the senses (sight, smell, touch, hearing and taste) come across. It is a different matter if the threat is real or imaginary. The mind treats the image of the threatening object as real. If someone was bullied many years ago, the images keep the incidents alive in the memory of the person. So if the person comes across any situation or person that unconsciously reminds them of the bullying incidents, then the person tends to feel the same way they felt during first experience. The net effect of many similar unpleasant experiences affects the current perception, thinking and behaviour of the individual.