Alcoholism is not a topic many of us want to think about, let alone deal with. In fact, if you ask anyone to define alcoholism, you’ll probably wind up with various answers. There are many definitions of alcoholism, and they’re all more or less true. Whichever definition you prefer, the simple truth is that alcoholism is a serious disease that threatens to completely undermine the affected individual’s health, family, and social standing.
Alcoholism rehab can be the first step toward freedom. One of the hardest things to do when you have alcoholism is admit you have a problem. Agreeing to go to alcoholism rehab may seem overwhelming because it basically means you really are an alcoholic. We fight the label for one reason: we don’t want to stop drinking. Alcoholism has profound effects on perception and behavior, and it distorts your thinking. Studies show alcoholism damages the ability to store memories; so many alcoholics literally “forget” what they did last week, last month, and especially last year. These memory deficits get worse the longer you use alcohol, and binge drinkers are especially vulnerable to the damaging effects on their ability to remember new things. In fact, alcoholism can permanently damage your ability to learn new things.
All is not lost, however. Recovery can help you rebuild your life, and you will likely see improvements in your memory after some time without alcohol in your body. The longer you drink, the more likely damage will be permanent.
Most important is the fact that every time you “quit” and withdraw from alcohol, then start drinking again, you cause even more damage to your brain. The repeated withdrawal seems to be the most damaging to memory and learning. There are some drugs that can mitigate the impact of withdrawal and prevent further damage to the memory, and good alcoholism rehabs can make sure you take these during your detox.
If you have tried to get sober yet keep relapsing, alcoholism rehab gives you the best chance of succeeding. Choose carefully, and you can get the right medical supervision during your withdrawal and learn the tools and strategies necessary for long-term sobriety.
If you have tried rehab before, that doesn’t mean it won’t work this time. A certain percentage of alcoholics need a couple of reminders, for lack of a better term, that they can’t handle alcohol without ending up with terrible consequences.
If any of the following apply to you, alcoholism rehab might be the right next step to reclaim your life:
- You have gotten more than one DUI
- You have lost a relationship due to drinking