Alcohol

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Because alcohol is legal and readily available, it occupies a unique position in American substance abuse culture. More people have used alcohol than any prescription or illegal drug. However, alcohol-related accidents and illnesses claim roughly 88,000 lives each year, making it the fourth leading preventable cause of death in the U.S.

Sovereign Health’s alcoholism treatment program heals the ravages wrought by abuse and treats the underlying psychological factors that fuel addiction. We recognize that treating only the physical effects of alcohol addiction affords temporary relief. For patients to rid themselves of alcohol dependence, they must examine their self-destructive impulses; Sovereign Health provides a safe environment for patients to do this with our alcohol rehab.

Alcohol Addiction

Alcohol is the most abused substance in America. The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Addiction notes there are over 17.5 million people in the U.S. with an alcohol abuse problem.

An alcoholic is defined as an individual who is physically and psychologically dependent on alcohol. In the early stages of alcoholism, physical symptoms include blackouts and stomach cramps. As the disease progresses, its ill-effects on the body become more pronounced. Due to the negative effects that alcohol addiction can have it is often best to seek alcoholism treatment sooner rather than later.

What is Addiction?

Addiction is a disease that manipulates a person’s sense of reward, motivation, memory and a number of related neurological functions.

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Alcohol Abuse on the Body

Most people have heard of cirrhosis (scarring of the liver). This is one of the more common conditions resulting from alcohol abuse, but alcohol abuse impacts every system in the body. Other health conditions related to alcohol abuse include:

  • Pancreatitis
  • Loss of coordination
  • Blackouts
  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Infertility
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Birth defects
  • High blood pressure
  • Damage to the heart muscle
  • Malnutrition
  • Reduced bone density
  • Urinary tract problems
  • Spider angiomas or spider web veins
  • Red blotches on the face and neck
  • Abscesses and skin sores
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Alcohol Abuse on the Brain

Alcohol abuse leads to severe neurological disorders, including:

  • Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Roughly 80 percent of alcoholics have a thiamine deficiency. In some cases, this deficiency leads to Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. This condition consists of two components. Wernicke encephalopathy is a short-term condition characterized by mental confusion, eye paralysis and loss of muscle coordination. Korsakoff psychosis is a long-term debilitating condition. It is characterized by deficits relating to short-term memory. A person with the condition may have vivid recollections of early life experiences but have no recollection events from one hour ago.
  • Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS). This is an irreversible condition that occurs when a woman consumes excessive alcohol while pregnant. Children with FAS have distinctive facial features. Their brains possess fewer neurons than normal brains. As a result, they have long-term cognitive and behavioral health issues.
  • Lowered gray matter. Research using magnetic resonance imaging reveals alcohol reduces gray matter in the brain. These gray matter cells assist in governing memory, learning, decision-making and social behavior. The frontal lobe is most affected by excessive drinking. This area of the brain is concerned with planning, controlling impulses and regulating behavior

Alcohol by the Numbers

Binge drinking alone costs the U.S. over $200 billion annually. Other sobering statistics include:

  • In 2014, alcohol-related fatalities accounted for over 30 percent of all driving fatalities
  • Over 10 percent of children live with a parent with an alcohol problem
  • Over 1,800 college students (age 18 to 24) die from alcohol-related injuries annually
  • Nearly 20 percent of college students meet the criteria for alcohol use disorder (AUD)
  • Annual cost for underage alcohol use is over $50 billion
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention note excessive alcohol use cost each state nearly three billion annually. California’s cost is over $30 billion
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Alcohol Treatment at Sovereign Health

Alcoholism is a disease. Alcoholics cannot control their drinking. They may delude themselves they are in control. They may applaud their self-restraint if, on occasion, they can drink and not get drunk. But in the end, the disease wins out. The only treatment for alcoholism is abstinence, a choice which, while hard, can be learned and improved upon at an alcohol rehab center.

Sovereign Health takes a deliberate approach to treating alcoholism. If warranted, the patient undergoes medically or nutritionally-assisted detox in our alcohol detox center. Post-detox, the patient begins treatment according to the individual treatment plan formulated during the intake assessment.

What is Addiction?

Addiction is a disease that manipulates a person’s sense of reward, motivation, memory and a number of related neurological functions.

Treating the physical effects of alcoholism but ignoring the psychological factors that fuel addiction accomplishes nothing. As part of our treatment for alcohol abuse, Sovereign Health uses multiple treatment platforms to identify and resolve the underlying factors that lead to self-destructive behavior. Depending on the needs particular to the patient, these modalities may include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), individual and group therapy, brain wellness, experiential therapies, yoga, art, equine therapy and a host of others.

Why Choose Sovereign Health for Alcohol Treatment?

We are a national leader in behavioral health treatment. Sovereign Health provides:

  • Joint Commission-accredited treatment
  • Evidence-based and holistic treatment modalities
  • Customized treatment plans
  • Facilities catering to teens or adults
  • Continuing care for up to one year following successful completion of treatment

Alcoholism is a complex addiction. We treat all overt and underlying aspects of the disease. Only when all issues are addressed do patients have a realistic chance at living a life free of chemical dependence. Contact our 24/7 helpline to learn more about how we can help provide assistance at our alcohol rehab center.